What is stretching?
Stretching is physical activity that elongates the muscles being used. Each muscle contains stretch receptors which attach themselves to the working part of the muscle called, muscle fibers.
What are the benefits of stretching?
There are several benefits and reasons we stretch before and after exercise. Firstly, we stretch to increase flexibility. The more flexible we are, the easier it is to move around and work on different planes.
We also stretch to improve blood circulation to our entire body, especially the muscles being used while exercising.
Another benefit to stretching is to improve and increase our range of motion, especially to our joints.
Finally, we stretch to relieve tension and relax the muscles in our body.
Are there different types of stretching?
Static stretching is most often recommended for general fitness. With this type, you slowly ease into the position and hold for 10 to 30 seconds before slowly releasing the stretch. There are two forms of static stretching.
Active Static: This form of stretching is used in yoga and martial arts. The stretch is held by the strength of agonist muscles (muscles responsible for the movement). Your arms are extended as your back, chest, and shoulders are stretched.
Passive Static: During this type of stretching, you hold the limb to perform the stretch without any assistance such as a bar or bands.
Dynamic stretching is stretching with movement. The body transitions gradually into a position and this movement is repeated as you increase your reach and range of motion
Stretching at Danceland Studio
Stretching classes at Danceland Studio is taught by Georgiana Theodorou, one of the few people in Cyprus who are certified for stretching classes.