Stretching Equipment

Written by Sierra Rein
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Any serious athlete will tell you that stretching is one of the most important, yet simple, physical activities to perform throughout the day. Not only does it reduce muscle tension and reduce stress, but stretching also prepares the mind and body for strenuous activity by increasing circulation and improving mental alertness. Stretching at the end of a long period of exercise will also help prevent aches and pains that may reveal themselves the next day.

Many professional fitness instructors and coaches purchase stretching equipment for their athletes to help them perform stretching moves effectively and safely. The easiest of these are strengthened rubberized bands that can be placed upon areas of the body and pulled in various positions to get the joints and muscles moving. One piece of equipment can help an individual perform about 20 injury-saving stretches, from the inner thigh stretch to the chest and shoulder stretches. These bands often come with instructional videos so the athlete knows the correct way to use the equipment in order to stretch themselves without harm.

People Who Benefit from Stretching Equipment

The fact is that anyone can take advantage of the use of stretching equipment. High schools and universities have been using this equipment for their athletic and gymnastic teams, and many yoga and Pilates instructors have recommended them to their own students. Stretching bands have been a major part of physical therapy instructions for those who have been injured or are recovering from a major disease. They are also used by members of the older generations who wish to keep their muscles and joints strong and flexible as they move into their retirement years.

It is important, however, to talk to a doctor or health care provider if an injury has already occurred before using a stretching band. For some injuries, rest is the best treatment and using a piece of stretching equipment can sometimes do further damage to the pained area. Repetitive strain injuries can become permanently damaged if they are stretched relentlessly without the chance to heal completely. If gone untreated, they can lead to immobility, limps, and the end of athletic careers.

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