This month I turned 60, I created a new DeniseAustin.com whole-life fitness membership, joined the Fierce 50 Movement, traveled with friends and family, and I created new workouts for the women in my 10-Week Whole Body Plan. What all of these things have in common is the idea of celebrating every moment we’re alive to get out and live active, healthy, happy lives with the people we care about the most. I can’t tell you how grateful I am for the people in my life and the opportunities I’ve had to help women of all ages grow strong, confident, and healthy.I just wanted to take a moment to reflect on and appreciate all of that before launching into my favorite stretching tips!!Stretching With the ExpertMy DeniseAustin.com membership includes access to a 3-Week Toning and Flexibility and my 3-Week Stretching mini-challenges! They are both a great way to increase your mobility and flexibility. You can start your free trial now to access these challenges, but also use these tips.
My Favorite Ways to Increase Your FlexibilityWhile Dr. Dave brought us a lot of interesting techniques and variations on more common stretches, let’s dive deeper into some of his best tips on stretching and how you can become more flexible over time. You’ll also find that following these tips will help you enjoy stretching more.Here are the top five stretching tips:
- Consistent Practice. The more you stretch, the better. Although it is possible to overstretch, most people don’t stretch enough. A brief session in the morning and again in the evening will bring you the best results, but you will notice benefits even if you stretch just two or three times per week, every week. Consistent stretching over time will dramatically increase your flexibility.
- Synchronize Your Breathing With Your Movement. To get the most out of every stretch, use your breath to help your body move. When stretching, breathe slowly and deeply and concentrate on the area you are stretching. Use your exhales to sink deeper into each stretch.
- Take Your Time. Never rush a stretching session. Regardless of when you stretch, your results are better if your body is warm enough to create a light sweat. You can warm your body up by going for a quick walk before you stretch.
- Hold Each Stretch for a Minimum of 10 seconds. Even better if you can hold your stretches for longer than that (more like 20 or 30 seconds).
- Be Gentle With Yourself. Your body’s physical condition varies daily. You will notice that some days your muscles feel tighter or looser than others. Stay within your own comfort zone and don’t compare yourself to others. Be gentle, never push a stretch to the point of pain, and listen to your body so you can progress and increase your flexibility at your own pace.