3 Key Stretches to Boost Workout Performance

3 Key Stretches to Boost Workout Performance

To improve your workout performance, you should consider incorporating some warm-up and cool-down stretches. Both will contribute to preventing injury and keeping you healthy for the next exercise session. The three stretching exercises described below are ideal for easing any aches or pains that you already have. These exercises are also great for preventing strains during your workouts. As a bonus, they will also serve to increase your range of motion, so you’ll notice greater flexibility and agility after having included them with your workout.

The doorway stretch

The first step is to approach a doorway with your arm positioned upward and angled at 90°. Then rest your forearm on the doorframe and step forward into the frame while leaving your arm resting on the door. This movement should cause you to feel a slight stretch in the forepart of your shoulder. You can convert this into a deeper stretch by stepping forward a bit more. Now switch arms to stretch both sides out.

If you’re looking for a more intense shoulder stretch, you can straighten your arm out in the doorframe so that it’s positioned above your head and then slowly step forward. This stretch works on muscles that you would typically use in the gym, (i.e. deltoids, triceps, and shoulders). It’s a terrific warm-up stretch for increased mobility through your shoulder areas, as well as to warm up all the joints of your upper body.

Figure 4 stretch

To accomplish the figure 4 stretch, do the following:

  • lay down on your back, and then bend your knees
  • begin by crossing your right leg over your left leg while resting your right ankle on the quads
  • hold the back of your left leg with both hands and gently pull back until you can sense a stretching in your glutes and hips
  • switch sides and repeat the process.

The figure 4 stretch is an excellent warm-up since it does a great job stretching the hips, hamstrings, and glutes. These all need to be warmed up and loose before you begin any intense activity. To alleviate aching muscles after a workout, you should do the figure 4 stretch to loosen up again.

woman performing the cat-cow stretch

cat-cow stretch, Seattle chiropractor

The Cat-Cow stretch

Begin on your hands and knees, with your back flat, like a tabletop. Then you have to slowly arch your neck backward while pushing your stomach toward the floor. Look toward the ceiling and hold that position for three seconds. Next, slowly round your back upward while tucking your tailbone underneath. Push your spine up toward the ceiling as you look down at the floor.

Now gently switch between arching and rounding your back between 5 and 10 times while inhaling and exhaling with each motion. This stretch is excellent for mobilizing the spine and easing any tension in your back muscles. If you routinely lift weights as part of your workout, this will be a nice stretch for you. It’s also one of the best cool-down exercises you can do to avoid sustaining any strain from your main workout.

Flexible muscles are important for boosting workout performance and minimizing sports related injuries. Chiropractic care can also be beneficial to boosting your performance. Give us a call or fill out an FREE new patient appointment request online to see how we at Sonic Chiropractic can help you get the most out of your workouts. 

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