Thursday, April 6, 2017

How can you stretch and be happy?

Yesterday, a KaysFIT Academy member shared a reference to an online book "Stretching Anatomy" I remembered reading this book a few years back and it was good to be reminded of this "everyday important" subject once again.
ˌflɛksɪˈbɪlɪti/ noun
  1. the quality of bending easily without breaking."players gained improved flexibility in their ankles"
  2. synonyms:pliability, suppleness, pliancy, malleability, mouldability, stretchability, workability, limberness, ductility, plasticity; More
  3. the ability to be easily modified. "I enjoyed the flexibility of the schedule"
  4. willingness to change or compromise. "the government has shown flexibility in applying its policy"
Source: Google word search
Why stretch?
When we continuously stretch our muscles, we increase the length (elasticity) of the muscle and increase the flexibility, ultimately improving the flexibility and range of motion. Chronic injuries are common when the body goes out of balance (right flexibility, right tone & right strength).
"Are you flexible enough? can you bend forward and touch your toes?"
One of the best-kept secrets by the flexible people is to have stretching an everyday habit. Of course, gender (women are more flexible), age (younger ones are more flexible), and genetics play a major role in someone being flexible. The good news is that through proper training someone can become more flexible.
How many times have you experienced soreness and stiffness the entire day?
Do you know a proper stretch could have helped you?
A few years back, after I have realized that my body was not flexible enough to support my Ultra Marathon ambitions, I had started stretching regularly and certainly have been seeing benefits over the years.
I wanted to share another key benefit of stretching. Whenever my mind was occupied with too intense thoughts or would go through a stressful situation to deal with; I take out few minutes for a deep stretching routine followed by a 5-10 mins’ meditation and a short nap. I have always woken up with fresh thoughts and in many times finding solutions to the problems that I was dealing with.
Wow! isn't that simply amazing?
"Doing a light stretch for few minutes every single hour in a workplace improves the range of motion and avoids stiffening of muscles"
On many days, I enjoy a "stretching time" with my wife and also with my children. Being a Yoga teacher, she follows a very disciplined routine with her slow and carefully assumed Yoga postures and breathing techniques (which is another very important aspect for proper stretching). I can tell you, it is the best way to relax the mind.
The biggest struggle the adults go through is to ‘regaining’ flexibility. Regaining lost flexibility is a painful process and it is best done only with patience and sincerity.
Why do you have to worry about regaining anything if they were never lost?
Do you have children at home?
Why can’t there be a short session of exercise including stretching and strengthening routines every day with the entire family?
Can’t stretching be an everyday habit in out life?
Even at old age the ADL (activities of daily living) can be carried out with ease if the body is flexible enough.
Isn't "flexibility", one of the best investments for your family?
How can one stretch?
A light warm up before every stretching routine is a must to avoid serious injuries to the muscles involved. That’s why it is best recommended to warm up first (increase the core temperature and blood circulation) and then do light static exercises (advanced dynamic exercises are done by trained athletes), continue to go on with a steady state workout (running or strength training) and finish the exercise by a cool down routine followed by a deep stretching routine. A proper method to do is to stretch and hold the muscles for few seconds to few minutes, not to bounce while stretching and focus on the larger muscle groups (like shoulders, hamstrings, back, hips) to smaller muscles.
What are you waiting for?
Close this device, jump on the yoga mat or get up from your seat, starting from your neck, shoulders, back, hips, hamstrings, calves, ankles, hands - hold the stretch for about 20 counts and move on to the next.
Stretch more! Improve the range of movements! improve athletic performances! and finally, avoid Injuries!
"Stay committed to your decisions, but stay flexible in your approach" - Tony Robbinson
Cheers and enjoy this beautiful day!
About the author:
Coach Kay is an ACE Certified Personal Trainer and an ultra-marathon runner with an experience of running 60+ Marathon/Ultra marathons; After 24 years of working across engineering and software industry, he has established KaysFITAcademy (, an institution with a passion for transforming individuals for discovering the best in them.
Being an avid fitness enthusiast and a running coach he has been successfully helping many individuals (beginners to Ultra Marathoners, couch potatoes to fitness freaks) to realize their running, personal health & fitness goals

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