Everything about stretching for strength athletes
- Body & Gym Posts
- 09 Jan, 2020
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Opinions are divided when it comes to the usefulness of stretching for strength athletes. For example, people believe that it can be negative for strength training, and that most beliefs about stretching are not scientifically substantiated (link). Others are very positive about stretching because it improves blood circulation, increases range of motion and reduces the risk of injury (link). We believe that stretching is definitely beneficial for strength training, as long as you do it the right way.
Different ways of stretching
There are two ways of stretching: dynamic and static stretching. Both ways offer benefits in certain situations, and we therefore recommend applying both.
With static stretching you stretch your muscles to a certain point and hold this for 30 seconds to 1 minute. This point is usually just below your pain threshold, and is the point where you can stretch to the maximum. It is not meant to hurt, so go gradually to this point.
In addition, we recommend that static stretching should only be applied on rest days and not on training days. This promotes the flexibility of your muscles and can also help you with your strength training. Remember again not to do this for your strength training as this will have a negative effect. During static stretching your muscles go into a rest position, if you would do strength training in this position you will have less strength.
With this form of stretching you don't hold on for a few seconds, but stretch your muscles in a mobile way. This type of stretching is definitely recommended for sports such as football or martial arts, but it can also be done as a warming-up for strength training.
The most important thing about warming up is still the warming sets. Dynamic stretching, however, can help to make your muscles more flexible during strength training. This not only helps to increase the range of motion, but can also make certain exercises run more smoothly because you improve your mobility.
It also sometimes happens that you have early muscle pain. This is muscle pain that occurs during or shortly after your workout. Dynamic stretching helps to remedy this without your muscles coming to rest. If you still have muscle pain later on, you need to stretch statically on rest days to optimize your recovery process.
Combine with good nutrition
Stretching is therefore especially advantageous with it recovery and the flexibility of your muscles. These two parts are very important for your overall progression, and stretching alone is only part of it. A good one nutrition is another essential part of muscle recovery and flexibility. Think sufficient here vitamins and minerals, proteins and carbohydrates.
Stretching does have an advantage with strength training, if you do it the right way. With the right combination between dynamic and static stretching you will not only recover faster and have less muscle pain, you will also be able to exercise your exercises better due to the increased flexibility of your muscles. In addition, you can also have more muscle power if you do this in combination with a good diet.