The most common form of stretching is static stretching. This is a movement in which a muscle is stretched beyond normal constraints and then held for a period of time to improve flexibility and elasticity of the muscles and joints. It is commonly accepted that this type of stretching should be done after exercise or when the muscles are warm. Many studies show each individual stretch should be held for 20 to 30 sec, for a total program of 10-20 minutes. This should be done 2-3 times per week to maintain the benefits stretching gives.
If you do some research into stretching, you will see many varying opinions on both how and when to stretch, as well as the benefits thereof. However, one constant is that stretching is done by holding a position for a specific period of time. This may be 10 sec, 30 sec, or even 60 sec. The good news is that your Gymboss Interval Timer can be programmed for any period of time you desire. The Gymboss will keep your stretch hold times consistent and keep your entire stretching routine duration on track. Also, it has vibrate and low beep features that allows for non-obtrusive notification when it time to move to the next position.
There are many benefits of stretching, with the most significant being improvements in flexibility and joint movement. Stretching helps maintain or even increase joint range of motion that is lost naturally as you age. Another benefit includes increased circulation to various parts of the body, which in turn stimulates as increase in energy and makes you feel less sluggish. Finally stretching can promote stress reduction, re-lengthen muscles that were tightened during exercise, and may help decrease the risk of future activity-based injury due to greater overall flexibility. To reap these benefits, your stretching program should be done on a consistent and regular basis.