Dr. Tommy

Concierge Medicine Tampa Bay


How stretching can benefits your body and mental wellness.
As I made clear in my last blog post, I find stretching to be very important, not just for IT Band Syndrome! Every move we make, our body is using all different kinds of muscles, tendons, ligaments, etc. and even with the simplest of actions we can injure ourselves if we are not properly stretched out. You can even injure yourself just trying to reach for the sugar off of the top pantry shelf! You don't think about it until it actually happens, but trust me, out of experience, don't let it happen. You can avoid MOST muscle related injuries just from stretching alone! Maybe explaining some the benefits to you will be a better motivation to get you to start!
Increases Flexibility and Range of Motion

When we use our muscles, they begin to shorten and tighten up. As we age, it will happen naturally. If we stretch out on a daily basis, it will assist in preventing injuries by a substantial amount. The more often you stretch, the more flexible your muscles will become and your range of motion will expand, allowing your body to move more freely. Also, with less chance of injury! Once you get into a good stretching routine, you will notice that your workouts will get easier, and you will be able to accomplish much more.
Increases Circulation
Although not every injury can be 100% prevented, it can be reduced greatly when your muscles are receiving the nutrients they need to remain healthy and strong. When you stretch out, you are opening up and allowing your blood to flow better throughout your body. Your blood is what carries all of the goodies and nutrients to specific parts of the body that uses them. If your muscles are receiving the correct amount of what they need, it'll keep them healthy and assist in recovery after use or exercise. Good circulation is also VERY important for your heart health as well! 
Reduces Stress
Not only does stretching reduce physical stress, but mental too! Whenever you are feeling stressed or anxious, your muscles can sense it. They start contracting and tensing up, which in turn makes your muscles stressed! By following your stretch routine, it will alleviate the tension in your muscles, and will also give your body an endorphin rush , since it is technically still a form of exercise! And since you must focus on your healthy breathing during your routine, your body will feel a sense of relaxation. 
Now these aren't the only benefits that you receive from stretching, but I think it's enough to catch your interest in testing out a routine! If you don't feel confident enough to start on your own, please get in touch with us at Echelon-Health to set up a complimentary assessment with either Dillon or me, and we can get you on the right path to a happy body! And for all of you overachievers that already have your set routines, my next blog is going to be on my FAVORITE stretches, and what parts of the body they're good for. Stay tuned!

-Rebecca Brand, LMT