What are the pros and cons of assisted versus solo stretching?
We can all agree that stretching has numerous benefits. Whether you’re an athlete, someone who casually works out, looking for physical office wellness, or casually working through some movement limitations, stretching routines are necessary for a body that moves the way it’s supposed to. Stretching even benefits those suffering from poor posture, the effects of a sedentary lifestyle, or coping with physical disorders and disabilities.
The upsides of stretching include:
Beyond the physical effects, stretching can even improve mental health. Stretching releases endorphins, which interact with the brain and reduce the impact of both physical and emotional stress. It reduces tension, and helps you feel better by recharging and refreshing your body!
When it comes to stretching, there are quite a few types. Stretching routines are usually grouped by the motions they include, like dynamic versus static. However, another way to group stretching is by whether or not you perform the movements alone. Solo stretching is when you stretch by yourself, and the type of stretching most of us think of when we imagine stretching. Assisted stretching involves the help of someone else.
At Stretch Affect, we are certainly proponents of assisted versus solo stretching; it’s what we do! There are many reasons why we feel so passionately about it, and we love sharing our knowledge and expertise on assisted stretching with others.
While there are undeniable pros to our techniques, the biggest benefit to assisted stretching is learning how to stretch. When you’re new to stretching, having someone walk you through the stretches is especially helpful. Even if you’ve stretched before, new stretches can be confusing and even difficult.
Beyond just learning the basics, here are some of the biggest reasons you should consider assisted versus solo stretching.
Many of our patients believe they’ve been stretching correctly their whole lives, but still experience aches, pains, and injuries. Attending assisted stretching sessions complete with manual therapy can make sure that you’ve been stretching correctly.
We’re all prone to compensating when certain portions of our kinetic chains are weak, but working with a stretching professional helps identify those points and reprograms the neuromuscular system to create more purposeful, effective stretching routines.
It can be easy to overdo it when you stretch alone. Stretches found on the internet or recommended by a friend can seem simple, but often put people into positions they’re not yet ready for. These injuries may be caused by simple imbalances among flexibility, stability, and mobility. These words are often used interchangeably but mean different things. Injury may come from over-stretching the muscle, but just as often can be caused by overstretching a tendon or ligament or going beyond your joint’s mobility.
It’s far easier to avoid injury when you have a Stretch Affect professional by your side.
Assisted stretching doesn’t simply throw a random set of stretches at you in hopes that some of them target your weak spots. Many solo stretching regimens are either too specific or too generalized, leaving you with a body that isn’t fully prepared for healing, rest, or tomorrow’s activities.
When you choose assisted stretching versus solo, you’re assigned a specific physical therapist that keeps your unique body’s needs in mind when choosing exercises. Moreover, no two stretch sessions are the same! At Stretch Affect, we work with your body and tight spots and alter our stretching plans during the session if it seems like certain places need extra attention. Assisted stretching is simply the best way to get the most out of stretching.
There are benefits to solo stretching routines, as well. For one, you can do solo stretches, well, alone! This makes it far more convenient, and it’s a form of stretching you can do any time, anywhere. Second, solo stretching combines stability, mobility, and flexibility. Assisted stretching can help you achieve positions that your muscles aren’t yet strong enough to hold, but as you learn to do more stretches on your own, you don’t need to rely on a trainer as you improve stability and strength.
Ultimately, all stretching is bound to have a positive impact on your body. Stretch Affect continues to recommend a combination of both — assisted stretching led by one of our trainers, plus solo stretching that you perform at home or as part of your office wellness routine.
With the benefits listed above, though, the answer is clear: assisted stretching carries advantages simply unavailable from solo stretching alone. Our team at Stretch Assist is ready to tell and show you how assisted stretching can change your life for the better.
Get in touch with us today on our website or by contacting us, and set up your initial consultation! When you do so, we’ll evaluate your body and create a customized set of stretching routines based on your body’s weak spots. With reduced pain, incredible flexibility, and improved performance, the life you want is just a call away.
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