Should We Stretch Before an Event?

Ah, the cliche to stretch, or not to stretch, that is the age-old debate. It’s a very passionately discussed topic between

  • sportspeople and athletes
  • active indivudals
  • PE teachers
  • sports instructors
  • sports science researchers and experts

There are those who are very passionate towards stretching before events. And there are those that claim the opposite end, that stretching before events will create more risks and potential injury compared to any benefits whatsoever.

So how?

Should we stretch or not? Warm up or not? How to warm up?

YES Warm-up

This is good plus plus point to do, because warming up safely and effectively will help

  • prepare your joints and muscles
  • prepare your lungs and heart

These overal not only increases performance during the event, but also decreases risk of injuries or muscle tears.

BUT! Stretching is NOT warming up

Yeah, stretching isn’t really warm up per se.

Yes, stretching can help start the warm up or be part of warm up, but stretching by itself isn’t warm up (or at least, not the best way to warm up) for a sports or exercise event.

A better way to warm up:

  • on-the-spot light jogging
  • on-the-spot high-knee jogging
  • slow jogging to-and-fro
  • skipping forwards, backwards, side-to-side (left and right)

Then progressly do the “lighter” version of the sports or activities you’d be participating in, eg with marathons or jogging, the above examples are usually good enough. But for stuff like say, basketball, you may want to also

  • move your shoulders and arms similar to throwing shots
  • jumps
  • mini-jump shots
  • mini-dashes and sways

The arguments for-and-against stretching before exercise

  • For / Pro-stretching: good as it “makes” it easier for body to participate in the activity, preventing injury
  • Against stretching: makes muscles and joints “loose”, decreasing performance and increasing injury risk

The biggest point is that both isn’t conclusively proven on BOTH sides.

So…stretch or not? What’s the conclusion?

There’s isnt any clear conclusion if stretch or not.

For us, we’d rather you do lighter versions of the exercises as we mentioned earlier, as it’s more functional…and stretch AFTER the event as you cool down and wind down from the event.

The thing is, everyone’s body reacts differently to

  • sports
  • warm ups
  • injuries
  • etc

When in doubt, we take the conservative approach, light stretch at best and sports-specific warm ups.

Stretching equipment

that you can consider is

  • this: which not only has stretching equipment, but also a combination of release-tools for tight muscle release
  • stretches mat which is portable, rollable compact and light too
  • infra red heating lamp to provide infrared penetration without too high heating temperature and will be a good complement to stretch sessions

Where To Next?

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *