Flexibility offers many physical benefits, allowing you to move your joints and muscles with ease. When your muscles are flexible and supple, life is so much easier! It’s easier to move around and do your activities if you are not stiff and locked up.

Can you reach your toes without bending your knees? Or does your back hurt after a few minutes of bending? If so, increasing your flexibility should be one of your top priorities.

What are the Benefits of Increased Flexibility?

Improves Mobility

Over time, your muscles and joints lose flexibility as a natural part of aging. While this is considered normal and accepted by most, it doesn’t have to be your norm! You can slow down the decline and improve your range of motion.

When you do flexibility exercises regularly, you should notice that it is easier to move, and there is less tension in your muscles and joints. That is because they are working more freely and effectively.

Prevents Injuries

Every day, your body is subject to physical stress as you do your activities. Improving your flexibility helps your body perform better and prevents muscle imbalances that can cause injuries. Flexibility prevents stiff muscles that make you weak. You also gain better control of your body so you can respond to situations without injuries.

Reduces Pain

When your muscles are tight and tense, you can experience aches and cramps. Toxins can build up in your muscles if you don’t move them much. That is why it is important to stretch your muscles to improve flexibility.

If you have supple, less tense muscles, you feel less discomfort. The blood can flow much easier to your muscles, nourishing them and getting rid of toxins. If you have been injured, improved blood circulation allows your muscles to recover faster.

Improves Posture and Balance

Do you have good posture and balance, or are you not aware of your own stance and just take them for granted? Unfortunately, many people slouch and if made to pull their shoulders back it feels uncomfortable to them.

When you improve your flexibility, you also improve your balance and posture, which makes you feel lighter and more stable. With better posture and balance, you will feel more comfortable sitting or standing the right way.

Makes Muscles Stronger

Increasing your flexibility also strengthens your muscles. Many people don’t readily think of stretching as a way to strengthen their muscles, but it plays a critical role in building muscle.

Flexibility exercises lengthen muscle groups, which creates more space to build muscle. Greater muscle strength is also essential in supporting your movements and ensuring that you have the right amount of tension as you do your physical activities.

Boosts Athletic Performance

Improved flexibility also improves your athletic performance, allowing you to better engage in sports and other extraneous activities. If your muscles and joints are not flexible, you will feel stiff and limited, preventing you from moving freely.

Flexibility boosts your coordination, range of motion, and balance, so your performance improves.

How Do You Improve Your Flexibility?

Here are a few ways you can improve your flexibility to enjoy the benefits:

Foam Rolling

Foam rolling is an exercise that helps increase blood circulation to your muscles. If you improve your circulation, your tight muscles loosen. Foam rolling can lengthen your muscles, preventing tightness and contractions and improving flexibility.

Dynamic Stretching

Before doing an activity, it is better to do dynamic stretching instead of static stretching. This involves moving back and forth through your natural range of motion without holding, straining, or trying to push past your limit. Dynamic stretching stretches your muscles and joints, gradually increasing your range of motion. Examples of dynamic stretching are hip openers and lunges.

Static Stretching

After your activities, your muscles are warmed up and more supple. This is when it is best to hold a stretch and try to reach your maximum range without pain. You hold a stretch for a few seconds until you feel slight discomfort only, then gradually increase the time.

Active Isolated Stretching

Active isolated stretching means isolating a muscle and stretching it while contracting the opposite muscle, holding it for a few seconds, then relaxing. You need resistance to contract the muscles. Active isolated stretching improves flexibility while also reducing pain and the risks of injuries.

Improving your flexibility gives you many health benefits, such as better mobility, fewer injuries, improved balance and posture, and greater muscle strength. If you are not incorporating stretching and flexibility exercises into your routine, it’s about time you started. Do stretching regularly, target areas that need it, and incorporate strength training too. You will feel the improvements slowly but surely!