Monday, August 22, 2011

Stretching - good?, bad?, what do you do?

We've all heard about the controversy of whether it's good or bad to stretch before a workout.  We've all heard people who swear by pre-workout stretches and those who think you might as well cut yourself with a kitchen knife.  I'm sure at one point in time you've also heard about the differences between different types of stretching - ballistic versus static. 

Here's what I'm interested to know...

What do you do?

 Do you stretch before a workout?  
Do you stretch before a race? 
If so, what kind of stretches do you do?  
If not, why not?  
Do you stretch after a race/workout?  
What's your take on the controversy?
Is stretching a religious habit for you, an occasional occurrence, or as rare as a scientist going to church?



Stay fit.  Stay healthy.  Stay safe. 

9 comments:

SupermomE12 said...

I am a believer in doing what works for you. So to the people that say they have been running for 30 years injury free and have never once stretched, I say good! Don't stretch.

For me, the stretching feels good and works. I do some dynamic warmups and very light stretching before, and then a good foam roll and stretch after every run. Works for me. :)

Erika said...

I never stretch for some reason - maybe it's because I forget?

I probably should stretch more though since my muscles are super tight these days - ugh

Mamarunsbarefoot said...

I used to be an avid stretcher.. It did nothing for me. Now I'm a roller. Very rarely do I stretch. The information on this topic is also very conflicting

ajh said...

I stretch after a workout and on days I don't work out (mostly). My stretches are related to the two injuries and I have had and trying to make sure they don't return.

Samantha said...

I definitely should stretch more than I do. I try my best to stretch after all long runs. Foam Roller too!

Ron said...

There is actually no controversy. The literature clearly defines stretching as "not beneficial" for anything measurable. That is not to say people do not enjoy it. I have not delegated a muscle stretch to any of my patients in over 2 years. i do not need them for the patients do awesome without it. Here is what I say: You used to say when I feel tight I stretch, now say when I feel tight I strengthen and the problem goes away. No daily stretching or foam rolling. People dont know that foam rolling and stretching have the same physiological effect. A downer on the nervous system which makes them feel tight later. A cycle. I do not stretch and I have no pain, no issues. Flexibility is over rated.

Coy Martinez said...

I stretch a little before I run or bike but I stretch a LOT right after I run or bike and they days that follow. Mostly my legs, I fold them around yoga style many time a day till I feel like a loose rubber band. It's second nature to me now. I figure if I ever stopped running or biking I would still stretch out of habit. I'm a dork.

OH! I meant to tell you, I bought a new bike last night! Got an all carbon fiber Cannondale Synapse. It's sweet!

Molly @ the F-spot said...

Yoga. It will change your life and I am not [just] being dramatic.

Incorporate at least one weekly yoga session into your "active recovery" training and you will reap benefits that go beyond just stretching -- greater flexibility, core strength, using auxiliary muscles, etc...

Richelle said...

I don't stretch as much as I used to on the days that I run, but I stretch like the dickens when I do yoga on my non-running days. This has worked well for me.