At our Scottsdale gym, you’ll be doing a lot of great activities to help whip yourself into shape, whether you’re focusing on aerobic fitness, strength training, or a healthy combination of the two. Living an active lifestyle and becoming more fit is great, but so is staying clear of any potential injuries. Even avoiding feeling excessively sore at the end of a workout is something that most people can value, and so today’s blog post is going to be about the importance of stretching – or ‘dynamic’ stretching, for that matter.

With a gym membership at Scottsdale’s best gym, our dedicated fitness professionals at CSS Fitness will work with you to make sure that you’re not only making progress when it comes to strength, cardiovascular endurance, and flexibility, but also that you’re doing all of those things safely. If you’re curious about what our fitness programs look like here at CSS Fitness, check out this page or read on to learn a few ins and outs about what’s considered ‘dynamic’ stretching.

What Is Dynamic Stretching?

Dynamic stretching is a kind of stretch that uses the momentum of a movement in order to complete its extension of the involved muscle groups. As such, dynamic stretches like arm circles, legs raises and leg swings and walking lunges are all considered examples of this. By ‘warming up’ your muscles through repetitive motions, you’re preparing your body and your muscles to engage in a certain activity that actually uses them.

But you were probably taught how to stretch a certain way growing up in grade school, right? Well..

Consider Avoiding Cold Stretching

Stretching is an interesting and widely debated topic in the fitness and exercise world, so do your own research and listen to your own body as you get active and work out. The conventional “static stretch” or stretch and hold method can be a bad idea if your muscles aren’t warmed up, so to speak.

So in that vein, it’s probably not a great idea to throw on your workout clothes and immediately start touching your toes. Instead, get your heart rate up a little bit and move your muscles around to warm them up and prepare them for lifting, running, your sports practice, or whatever physical activity lies ahead of you. If you think about it, forcing muscles that aren’t warmed up to stretch out sounds inefficient, and almost painful!

Prepare Your Muscles For What They’re About To Do

We’ll keep the science relatively simple, but here’s what’s up: Your body has many different mechanisms that need to be activated and stimulated. So, when you put your body through a series of stretches while you’re in motion, this sends signals from the brain to your muscle fibers and connective tissues in that particular area to prepare to do work. Your body will then create the physiological response of its temperature rising and additional blood being pumped to the specific areas of the body that are being worked.

In addition to proper blood flow getting to the working areas of your body, your muscle fibers and connective tissues will gain more flexibility and range of motion, which is extremely important for injury mitigation!

The Bottom Line With Dynamic Stretching

The main point to take away here is that by doing dynamic stretching after your warm-up and before your workout, you are going to feel stronger and work up to a heavier load on your muscles. Also, remember that dynamic movements are very sport and movement-specific, so the types of movements that you do in your dynamic warm-up depend on what physical activity you’re actually doing.

As a quick example, good runners who train safely tend to warm up with something like a lunge matrix and leg swings before they start jogging, because these dynamic warm-ups not only raise their heart rate but also physically prepare their leg and core muscles for the actual act of running. It’s all about preparation!

Learn More About Stretching and Warming Up With A CSS Fitness Gym Membership!

We tend to find that people learn a lot about themselves when they start working out at our modern gym. Remember, fitness is a long-term journey and it’s not all about putting on crazy amounts of muscle or losing unheard of amounts of fat in record time.

The wonderful ability of our muscles should not be taken for granted, and that’s why it’s very important that you warm-up properly and practice injury mitigation to ensure a life of good health and good fitness. After all, what good is getting strong if you’ve injured yourself? Train safely with the pros at CSS Fitness by investing in a gym membership today!

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