Personal Health and Fitness

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Post Exercise Stretches

Video 19 of 71
2 min 2 sec
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Cool downs are very important, particularly if you've been through an intensive exercise in any way. A cool down could be from an intense marathon, a long distance run, or simply after a low-intensity yoga class. But it just depending on what you've been doing, will depend on what you will do with your cool down. For example, if you've been doing a long distance run and you're going to bring the elevation of the heart rate down, you're going to make sure that you are going to start stretching once you've brought your heart rate down to your resting rate. You do not want your heart rate too high, you want to be in a resting state, but you want to make sure that the muscles are still warm. So you won't wait too long, but you will make sure you're in control of your body before you start the cool down.

You've been lots of tension through the quads, through the calves, through the hamstrings, through the glutes. So it's important that you spend a bit of time on each muscle, to stretch out and get rid of that lactic acid that's been stored in there during exercise and release that back into the blood system, so that basically the body can recover at a better rate. And remember, the cool down is the prime time to get more length out of each muscle. The more range of movement you have in the muscle, the better range of movement you will have for performance when you're exercising. And when they're warm straight after exercise, that is the best time to push those muscles to their absolute limit. To make sure that you're keeping that tension all the way through, to make sure you're going to get the most back from it that you can. And it's all about doing it over and over again. Get yourself into a good state of mind, where you have finished your run and you go and stretch down straight away. Give your body back what it's given you throughout the whole workout.