Best flexibility exercises
Prevent knee injuries and meniscus tears with these knee stretches
Best Flexibility Exercises: with resistance
There are several flexibility exercises which are commonly used. Those are ballistic stretching, dynamic stretching, active stretching, passive stretching, static stretching, and the two more complex types we will discuss, isometric and PNF stretching.
Isometric stretching is static stretching in which the muscle groups provide resistance through tensing of the stretched muscles. By using isometric stretching, you can easily and very rapidly gain static-passive flexibility, and this type of stretching is way more effective than either active or passive stretching. Isometric stretching is good in killing the pain that sometimes occurs with otehr forms of stretching, and is good in developing the strength in the tensed muscle. Isometric stretching is not recommended for children and adolescnets.
On the other hand, PNF (proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation) stretching stands as the quickest and currently the best way of achieving the static-passive flexibility. It is a technique which combines both the isometric stretching and the passive stretching and it gives a maximum static flexibility. As with the isometric stretching, PNF stretching is not recommended for people whose bones are still in the growing process.
Warm Up with Dynamic Stretching
The best way to warm up the body is to start with dynamic stretching flexibility exercises. It involves movements that start small and progressively increase in reach and speed. It consists of controlled swings of both legs and arms which take you to the limits of your motion. On the other hand, ballistic stretching is the type of stretching which uses the momentum of a moving body, arm or a leg, and it pushes it beyond its range of motion. Every flexibility exercises have its potential problems, and the main problem with ballistic stretching is that it is not considered to be very useful, and thus it is not recommended since it can lead to an injury.
Dynamic stretching is good for improving the dynamic flexibility, and it is great when performed as a warm-up action for aerobics, dancing or martial arts-based workout. It is important to stop doing it once the body gets tired.
Cool Down:Active vs Passive Stretching
There are two types of flexibility exercises; passive stretching and the active stretching.
In case of active stretching, you assume the position and hold it without any assistance or leaning on something. You simply rely on the muscle contraction of the agonist. One of the examples is lifting one leg in front as high as you can and holding it 10-15 seconds. Your antagonist, your hamstring in this case, relaxes due to reciprocal inhibitionn. Active stretching is good for increasing the active flexibility, and for powering up the agonist muscles. Yoga is the best example of active stretching.
Passive stretching on the other hand is when you take a stretching position, and hold it with the assistance of a partner, other body part or an apparatus. It is usually slower and it is very useful when it comes to relieving muscles from pain, and helping the muscles recover from an injury. It is also good for post-workout relaxing, especially for reducing fatigue and muscle tension and soreness.