Stretching is often prescribed by coaches for athletes in every discipline and especially figure skating. Stretching is the key to getting and staying flexible the reasoning goes. But what exactly does stretching do for us?
When we say that stretching increases flexibility, we’re not talking about developing the ability to turn yourself into a human pretzel. We’re actually talking about increasing or working on the flexibility of your muscle fibers to ensure that your joints maintain their optimal range of motion. When your range of motion is compromised by tight muscles, injuries are more likely to happen. And for an athlete that could mean the difference between their best season yet or sitting on the sidelines. Most of us have tight muscles to some degree, so stretching is an essential part of training. Unfortunately, there is no one-time fix for flexibility. In order to be effective, stretching should occur several times a week consistently to see results over time.
In addition to keeping your joints healthy, stretching does other fun things too! Check out the infographic below: