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3 At-Home Stretches to Get In Shape

Author: Niki L. Carayannopoulos, DO

Are you ready to improve your flexibility this summer…but you’re not sure where to start? A new infographic from the Mayo Clinic shares some fascinating facts about the human body, our typical day-to-day habits, and some basic at-home stretches you can use to help improve your mobility and overall performance.

These stretches are all about finding the “weak links” in your body – the joints and muscle groups that may need just a little improvement in order to make exercise easier, safer and more effective. As always, talk with your Houston sports medicine physician or primary care provider before beginning a new exercise routine. Also, listen to your body, and don’t do anything that you feel may put your health at risk.

Fast Facts About Your Body

Did you know that your body has more than 600 muscles and more than 300 joints? When you have inflammation, stiffness or tenderness in even just one of these joints, it can affect your entire body’s ability to move comfortably and efficiently. It’s important to address these issues as soon as possible so that you can keep moving and stay healthy!

Developing an injury can lead to disuse and/or improper use of your body, which (in turn) can lead to weakened muscles and loss of flexibility. According to the infographic, the average American is sedentary for 21 hours a day. Getting injured and neglecting proper care can contribute to those hours on the couch.

Let’s Find the Weak Links!

Using the infographic below as our guide, let’s take a look at three common “weak links” in the body, as well as what you can do to repair them.

  1. Lack of hamstring mobility. Are you able to touch your toes without bending your knees? If not, you may lack hamstring mobility. Corrective exercise: Bent knee hamstring stretch.
  2. Lack of hip mobility. Can you hold a single-leg bridge for 10 seconds without letting your hips tip side-to-side? If not, you may lack hip mobility. Corrective exercise: Quad hip flexor stretch.
  3. Lack of ankle mobility. Do you have trouble breaking parallel with your squats? If so, you may lack ankle mobility. Corrective exercise: Ankle stretch.

See a Houston Sports Medicine Doctor Near You

For more information about how you can loosen up, increase performance and stay safe, see a Houston sports medicine doctor near you. Schedule an appointment at Houston Institute for Sports Medicine & Orthopedics by calling (713) 756-5546. Or, schedule your appointment online.

Please consult with your physician before undertaking any form of medical treatment or adopting any exercise program or dietary guidelines.