Have you ever felt that your body just hurts? Maybe it’s due to a tough workout, or maybe you’ve spent too much time sitting in front of your computer. Whatever the reason, from time to time, bodies get a little achy — but they don’t have to stay that way.
Stretching can work wonders in ironing out cricks and crunches that might arise for a number of reasons. Better yet, there are countless other benefits to stretching, from increased flexibility to a clear mind.
But how do you know when you need to stretch? And how can you tell if you’re doing enough? Luckily, bodies are pretty smart machines. Learning to listen will help keep you tuned-in to what you need, including knowing when you could use a stretching session.
Keep reading for some telltales signs that you should be stretching more, and thank us later when everything feels a bit better.
Signs you should stretch
— Low energy levels: Believe it or not, there is a correlation between feeling energetic and stretching. If you find yourself constantly sleepy, it might do you some good to stretch it out. The reason being is that tense muscles use up more energy. By stretching your muscles with specific poses or movements, the muscles will become relaxed and therefore use less energy.
— Your posture is bad: When muscles are tense, it can lead us to fall into strange habits. A pinch in your lower back may inadvertently result in you standing differently to compensate, but more often than not, these slight adjustments only add fire to the flame. If you find yourself relying on bad posture to compensate for tight muscles, stretching things out will not only relax your body — but also improve your posture as a side-effect.
— You keep getting headaches: According to Medic Tips, recurring headaches are a surefire sign that you need to stretch stat. “Many headaches are simply brought on by tense, swollen muscles,” the site shares. “Improving blood circulation to these muscles as well as reducing tension can provide unexpected headache relief without medical intervention.”
How to stretch
Yoga is a wonderful way to stretch the muscles and relieve tension throughout the body. However, signing up for a class is sometimes out of the question, when you have a busy schedule or just don’t want to commit to a full hour-long (or more) studio session. Thankfully, all of the most beneficial stretches can be done from the comfort of your own home.
Daily Burn has compiled a list of 15 Stretches You Should Do Every Damn Day — and the name says it all. Whether you start with one or all of these, incorporating these poses into your daily routine will help fight off the unwanted signs listed above.