Whether you are a professional athlete, coach, physiotherapist or amateur sportsperson it makes sense to display stretching posters in your treatment room, training room or locker room, or wherever you are most likely to see it both before and after training/work-out sessions.
Everyone knows the importance of stretching before and after exercise and yet so many of us either don’t do it at all (especially after exercise), don’t spend enough time on it or don’t do a wide enough range/the correct exercises. By displaying a stretching poster you’ll never forget, as its looming presence over you will act as a constant reminder whenever you’re about to embark on a session. Positive results of a sound stretching routine include: an enhanced performance, avoidance of possible injury, maximized work-out and alleviation of muscle pain.
There are numerous stretching books available on the market and while it’s important read these in-depth accounts of the anatomy of stretching, stretching tips and techniques, stretching posters enable you to see immediately a range of exercises you might want to try/undertake before/after exercise. They act as an accessible quick reference guide; rather than having to find your book and hold it open at the desired page.
Experts have recommended pre-exercise stretches (for cardio exercise) should include the stretching of all major muscle groups for 10 to 15 seconds at least (longer if possible). Post exercise the stretches should be increased and held for 20 to 30 seconds at least per stretch (again longer if possible).
Previous studies show that stretching exercises lasting 30 seconds improve your flexibility to a greater extent than stretching exercises lasting 15 seconds. The same researchers found that a 60-second stretch improved flexibility more quickly than a 30-second or 15-second stretch. Participants who stretched for 60 seconds remained more flexible for longer than subjects in the other groups.
There is so much information and research on stretching it is worth reading up on, but also making sure you listen to your own body and what your own muscles need – this can’t always be found in a text book.
It is also worth remembering that stretches might also need to be done during your exercise routine/match etc, if your muscles feel tight, tense or stressed. Again, this is why having a stretching poster in easy viewing distance is so important.
There are numerous stretching posters available on the market so it’s worth putting in the research to see which one works for you, and matches your work-out/game. It’s worth making sure you have a tailored poster focusing on either upper body stretches, lower body stretches or neck/back/core depending on the type of exercise you are about to embark on. Those with clear, colour illustrations, and of a decent size are also often the easiest to use/decipher.