Stretching involves extending your muscles, connective tissue, and tendon. The aim of most stretching exercises is to improve muscle flexibility and elasticity, as well as improving circulation and mobility/function.
Stretching has many benefits, which can vary from person to person. In short, there’s something in it for everyone! Improved mobility can improve sport and work performance. But, even if you don’t have sport or work-related goals, maintaining good tissue (muscle, tendon, and connective tissue) flexibility and elasticity can prevent stiffness/tightness, which keeps you moving and performing the everyday tasks that matter to you.
The Benefits of Stretching
- Stretching regularly can help to increase your flexibility.
- Stretching specific muscles can help you improve your posture and reduce any musculoskeletal pain you might be feeling, including back pain.
- Certain types of stretching (see below) before taking part in any physical activity is an excellent way to get your muscles ready for the task at hand. This can improve your overall performance.
- The muscles tighten up as a response to emotional and physical stress. Stretching is, therefore, an excellent way to relieve stress.
- With regular stretching, you can increase your joints’ range of motion.
- Stretching can make your circulatory system more efficient.
Types of Stretching in Physical Therapy
There are many types of stretching, all of which are utilized appropriately at Oklahoma Physical Therapy. When you have a condition that requires the inclusion of stretching in your treatment program, your physical therapist will include a few of these. They include the following:
With dynamic stretch, the focus is on motion-based stretching, with variations in the speed of the routine. These movements can be slow, medium, or fast paced, but are always very controlled.
With this option, the muscle is stretched until the tension starts building up, and it is then held for around half a minute.
Ballistic stretching involves the use of a rapid bouncing motion to extend a muscle group to its full length. This option is used selectively because, if performed incorrectly, it can strain tissues in an unhealthy way. However, when used properly, ballistic stretching can have several benefits for mobility and performance. Ballistic stretching is typically more oriented towards athletic populations, but appropriateness will be determined by your physical therapist.
We Can Help
Do you need a physical therapist that can provide stretching therapy of all kinds in Oklahoma? Do you need to incorporate stretching into an existing physical therapy program? Contact our specialists here at Oklahoma Physical Therapy today.