If you work out on a regular basis, odds are good that you’re already stretching before and after your workout routine.  If you’re not, you should be, because stretching offers a raft of benefits.

Even if you don’t work out at regular intervals, daily stretching is still important, and in fact, offers the same benefits as it does to those who exercise often.  Here are a few of them:

  • Less Pain and Stiffness – If you suffer from chronic pain (whether or not you work out), a daily stretching routine will help keep your body limber and reduce stiffness throughout the day. Even better, you don’t have to limit yourself to just once a day stretching.  Any time you feel stiffness encroaching, spend a few minutes stretching!
  • Less Stress – The mind and body are connected. If you’re feeling stressed out and anxious, spending a few minutes stretching will not only provide physical benefits, but mental ones as well.  Studies have shown that as little as five minutes spent stretching can reduce cortisol levels in your body.  Since cortisol is the “stress hormone,” reducing it reduces your stress level.
  • Less Chance of Injury – Stretching before you engage in any strenuous physical activity will improve your body’s mechanics and functioning, reducing the chance of injury as you set about the day’s activities. Stretching again when you’re finished for the day will help keep muscle pain to a minimum.
  • Better Overall Health – Stretching increases and improves blood flow. Blood, of course, transports oxygen to every cell in your body.  More oxygen equals better health.  As a side bonus, stretching also helps your body pump more oxygen to your brain, so you’re likely to notice an improvement in your level of concentration.

All that to say, if you’re not already stretching on a daily basis, there’s no time like the present!