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How long do people spend stretching before/after a run or cycle? I know I should but time is always short and I figure the time is better spent working hard hence the stretch is a cursory 1 min or so. Obviously once I pick up an injury my views will change [:)]. Am I running a serious risk?


  • BritspinBritspin Posts: 1,655
    The short answer is it depends...some folk never stretch & are OK, some always stretch, but end up injured. Personally I love a good stretch, I don't feel I have completed a workout unless I have an effective stretch, at least 5-10 mins with 2 or more stretches for each muscle group worked..especially hamstrings. Sometimes when time allows I go on for 20+ mins & do some yoga, this I usually do when my meal is cooking or something else is going on that does not require my fullest attention (DO NOT make toast whilst stretching..top tip). So I would thoroughly recommend it may or may not stave off injury but you may feel a whole lot less sore next day.
  • AndreAndre Posts: 103
    I spend quite a lot of time stretching - anywhere between 5 and 10 minutes before and 10 and 20 minutes afterwards, although the length of time I spend stretching is inverse to the length of time I spend training (i.e. if I'm training for 1.5 hours, I'll stretch for longer than if I'm training for 3 hours).

    I also spend quite some considerable time warming-up and cooling-down before and after exercise, anywhere up to 30 minutes for some of my very high intensity workouts - enough, in any case, to stay warm throughout the stretching phase.

    Most people seem to get away with minimal stretching, though, so I'd just stick with whatever works best for you - for me, I just happen to enjoy that particular part of my training.
  • treefrogtreefrog Posts: 1,242
    I never stretch I don't have time. I go do the session, get home strip in front of the washing machine, jump into the shower, pack my kit for the next day, do some work, go to bed, get up, go to work, finish work (10 hours later), do the session.... ps when trying to lose weight I don't eat after 5.00pm. I know this is alegedly bad for you but it works
  • jon_gjon_g Posts: 318
    I'm with treefrog, i dont do any stretching. and i also dont do any sort of warmup. i cooldown by doing 5 minutes of slow walking after a run, or if i'm on the turbo i do whatever cooldwon they say to do on the training dvd they do, but thats it! naughty me hey! but so far so good, other than being about as flexible as an octagenarian i've never been injured. if i up the running too quickly i get stiff calves and shin splints, but i'll skip a running day and right as rain the next day. guess i'm just lucky!
  • bennybenny Posts: 1,314
    I never stretch after training; better to spend the extra 5-10 minutes to the real training, since we all are short in time and don't train as much as we would want to.

    I do have a stretch routine, which I combine with core strenght practice that I sometimes do on rest days. Or on an evening, when watching the tele with the wife I do that routine.

    Doesn't matter: she already knows I'm nuts, she doesn't bother![8D]
  • Totally with benny on that one.

    Do most of my stretching and core work together in the house, while the Missus is watching telly.

    One of my favourite stretches Legs Up the wall - great for relieving tired legs, not good for married life when she starts to moan about me leaving marks on her lovely paintwork. (also gets a bit confusing when watching telly upside down!)
  • BritspinBritspin Posts: 1,655
    Telly makes more sense upside down mostly, I find.
  • julesojuleso Posts: 279
    I do stretch after running - three stretches, less than 5 mins. Cross legs one behind other, touch floor; foot up on a table or something, legs straight, touch toe (of the foot that's up, obviously); straight leg behind, other leg bent, lean both hands on a wall to stretch down back of leg. I do this before I sit down, cos I'm sure that otherwise I'd get really stiff legs.
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