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Best Stretches to Improve Flexibility

Best Stretches to Improve Flexibility

Stretching daily is very useful for our muscles. Although stretching might sound boring it is not really hard to devote around 15 minutes for health. Stretch before workout can be beneficial for a number of reasons. It helps in preventing injuries and help in moving joints through full range of motion. Improving flexibility is important for soft tissue recovery, and it can provide power through range of motion. Moreover, flexibility is directly related to length and muscle tension and is a component of mobility. There are many different varieties of stretching and people are expected to focus on either static or dynamic type.

Best Stretches for Total Body Flexibility

These stretches can be helpful for maintaining the flexibility of the total body.

Quad stretch

  • Stand straight and bend one leg back to top of that foot.
  • Bring your foot near your buttocks and keep your bent knee in line with the other knee.
  • For deepened stretch put your buttocks forward
  • Touch the wall for balance if required and do the same with the other leg.

Shoulder stretch

  • Take one arm and extend it through your body.
  • Lightly press and with your extended arm deepen the stretch.

Hip stretch

  • Rest on your back and incline both knees with your feet flat on the floor.
  • Place your left knee which is closer to chest and bend it at a right angle such that it crosses over your body.
  • Make contacts with the chin or ankle of your left leg and bring the right knee towards chest and repeat it vice-versa.
  • Then wrap your hands around the right leg and pull it nearer to your body by deepening the stretch.

Triceps stretch

  • Raise one arm straight above you and bend your elbow such that your forearm is behind your head.
  • With the other hand carefully push your bent elbow.

Thigh stretch

  • Look up the ground with knees bent and soles on feet touching one another.
  • With your hands grasp your feet.
  • Also push down your knees with your elbows to make the stretch.

Hamstring stretch

  • Stand straight, bend one knee and extend the other straight in front of around five inches.
  • Ensure that are bending at the hips and keep back straight.
  • Bring your chest down until you can sense stretch at the back of extended leg.

Bicep stretches

  • Stretch your arms on your sides.
  • With both hands and rotate your thumbs down.
  • Back up until they are pointing to the back of you.

Side stretch

  • Hold your hands together and raise your arms in the straight direction.
  • Push your hands up and then over to each side of you.

Best stretch before workout

There are a large number of stretching exercises that can work wonders if carried out before workout. 

Shoulder roll

It is a fact that shoulders if heavy can carry a lot of tension. Due to ageing problems associated with shoulders usually increase.

  • Relax your shoulders and your arms at your sides by standing with feet hip-width apart.
  • Roll your shoulders forward, backward, upward and downward. 
  • Reverse all directions after 30 seconds.

Lunge walking

Stability is often challenged by lunge walking. This type of stretching exercise is vital for your legs and glutes. It will also stretch with hip flexors. Moreover, this type of exercise can be substituted with cardo exercise, strength-training compound moves with squat and lunge. It is necessary that stand tall with feet hip-width apart.

  • Lift your chest, brace your core, take back flat, and place your shoulders back. Place a large step forward with the right foot. It has lowered the body until your right thigh is concurrent with the floor. Bend both knees at 90 degrees. 
  • Return to a standing position after bringing a left foot forward.
  • With the help of left foot, place your lung forward again. Continue alternating legs and perform the same on both.

Lateral leg swing

  • With your feet together and stand tall. Extend your arms out to your sides or gripping a stable surface for balance.
  • Raise your right leg and shift your weight to your left leg out.
  • Lift your chest, brace your cores and back flat. Back and forth swing your left leg.
  • Continue to do this for 30 seconds, repeat and switch legs.


Cat cow is one of the best stretches to improve flexibility. This is because it is beneficial for neck, chest, core and hips.

  • With your back flat start on all four directions, under your shoulders and keep knees below the hips.
  • Bring your chin near your chest, turn back towards the ceiling and dodge your tailbones. After this exhale air.
  • Inhale air and incline your back towards downward direction. Lift your chest, chin and tailbone.
  • Between the two poses continue to alternate. This should flow with your breath.

Hip circle

Out of all stretch before work exercise, hip circle exercises are one of the best. It will help in loosening the buttocks, core and back. 

  • With knees slightly bent, stand with your feet hip-width apart.
  • Move your hips in a clockwise direction, forward, right, back and left. To warm up muscles wobble in large circles.
  • For 30 seconds continue to do this and then repeat the same in anticlockwise direction.

Forward leg swing

  • With your feet together stand tall and your arms at your sides. A stable surface is required for balance.
  • Move your left leg and then swing with your right leg and left arm in front of you.
  • Swap directions and swing with the left and right arm behind you. But do maintain the right arm in front.
  • Repeat these moves for the next 30 seconds, switch the legs and repeat.

Some stretching essentials

  • Stretching a warmup cannot be considered. Symmetry can be strived and focus on major muscle groups. 
  • One must not bounce his/her body while stretching.
  • It is necessary to hold the stretch for at least 30 seconds. In problem areas the stretch can last up to 60 seconds.

Stretching exercises are not just easy. It can be safely said that performance in physical activities can be improved. Risk of injuries can be minimized and it is worth noting that such exercises can help joints move through the full-range of motion. Blood flow can increase considerably and muscular efficiency increases because of these exercises. Performing daily activities can be vastly improved with such exercises.