If there is one thing that always gets forgotten after a good workout routine, it is definitely stretching!

So many people underestimate the importance of stretching and how it can help to heal your muscles and improve flexibility. Think about it this way: when you are training, your muscles are constantly contracting and lengthening. Over time, the ongoing use as well as poor posture can cause these muscles and their surrounding tissue to become shorter and tighter.

Learn the best stretches that you can use to release stress from your muscles and enhance flexibility.

Seated forward bend

Sit on the floor with your legs extended. Keep your back straight and slowly lower your torso towards the legs. Hold your toe and breath 3-8 times. Now slowly move back to your initial position. Practising this stretch post workout is good for your hamstrings. Besides, it provides a deep stretch for your entire back and helps calm your nervous system as well.

Calves and Hamstrings Stretch

While seated on a yoga mat, extend both legs out in front of you. Lift up and turn out your left leg so that your foot is resting against the inside of your right leg as shown. Reach for your right foot with your right hand (or the action of), ensuring that you are bending from the hip. If you can reach your toe, gently pull it back towards you. Hold this position for 20-30 seconds. Repeat on your left side.

Runner’s lunge

Stand 10 inches away from a wall; place palms on it. Step back with right foot. Bend left knee, keeping right heel down; hold. Repeat on opposite side.

Shoulder stretch

Stand with your shoulders held straight and far apart. Now raise your right arm and bend the elbow over your head at a 90-degree angle. Using your left hand, grab your right hand elbow and pull it gently to the left. Hold this position for a few seconds. Repeat the same on the opposite side. This stretch is good for your back and shoulders.

Heel drop

To perform heel drops, stand on the bottom step of a flight of stairs with the help of only the front half of your feet so that the rest half is in the air. Now gently allow your heels to drop and hold this position for some time before rising back to the initial position. Heel drops are good for your feet and calves.

Chest Stretch

Plant both feet on the floor shoulder width apart with arms by your sides. Reposition your hands behind your body and interlock your fingers. Gently pull your hands away from your body. This should cause your shoulders to retract (squeeze together) and open up your chest. Hold this position for 20-30 seconds.