If you’re someone who already has a normal workout routine, you’ll want to be sure you include exercises intended to improve your flexibility. You might not yet realize the importance of having a flexibility, which can be improved by sitting on massage tables for a relaxing rub down, but here are a few insights on the matter.

Prevent Injury

Moving the wrong way in your everyday life or during your regular workouts can result in an injury. Something as simple as turning over in bed or standing up has the potential to lead to a painful twinge in your back, shoulders or sides. To keep from being laid up for a few days (or longer) and out of commission, it’s important you work on your flexibility.

Reduce Soreness

After a long day at work, you may come home and feel sore, even if you have a desk job or another occupation that doesn’t involve much physical exertion. By stretching and working on your flexibility, you reduce the chances of becoming sore. Specifically, stretching provides better muscular balance, allowing you to easily maintain a solid posture and support the overall blood and nutrient content in your blood.

Everyday Performance

Ordinary activities like bending over to tie your shoes, lifting groceries, reaching for canned goods on the top shelf of the pantry and reaching over for a glass of water on the coffee table are all made easier and more fluid with flexible muscles. Without stretching and other exercises intended to improve muscle performance, such activities can become uncomfortable or even painful.

Longer Muscles

Maybe instead of being ultra buff, you’d rather have long, lean muscles. If so, you’ll definitely want to engage in exercises and activities meant to improve your flexibility. You may not be the strongest person at your gym, but you can most certainly claim the title for having a clean, toned look, which you might prefer to being a mountain of muscle.

Better Sports Performance

If you play any kind of sport, flexibility will easily become your new best friend. Muscles that can easily stretch and bend are vital to everything from football and basketball to baseball, volleyball and tennis. If you’re a runner, you newfound flexibility will allow you to take longer strides; and if you’re a skier, flexible muscles make it easier for you to bend your knees more and flex your hips.

Overall Comfort

Sometimes, one of the best joys of being flexible is that you can be comfortable sitting in any position. For someone who isn’t very flexible, the simple act of crossing her or his legs while sitting down can be more than a little uncomfortable. When you’re on a long road trip, being flexible can make the time more enjoyable and comfortable if you don’t have much in the way of legroom, and the same applies to flying on an airplane.

It’s an especially good idea to be flexible if you’re a taller person since you might have more trouble than others when it comes to having adequate legroom and sliding in and out of tight places.

How to Improve Your Flexibility

Now that you understand a bit more about the importance of being flexible, it makes sense to learn just how you can go about being more flexible. Simply sitting on the floor with your legs fully extended and reaching down for your toes is an effective static stretch that’s great for your hamstrings and hip joints.

Reaching over your head with one arm and stretching to the opposite side of your body is good for the obliques and shoulders. You can take things further by engaging in activities like yoga and pilates, which are great for building and strengthening muscles while improving your overall flexibility.

No matter how you choose to improve your flexibility, you’ll want to make sure you don’t overdo things, which can result in the very injuries flexibility is intended to prevent. It’s also best to engage in stretching when your muscles are warm, such as after engaging in cardiovascular exercise.

Focus on your breathing while stretching, and be sure you work well within your limits. Finally, what you eat also plays a part in your overall flexibility, so be sure to cut out the junk food and unhealthy options.

Be sure to incorporate flexibility training with your exercise routine, or use flexibility training as a starting point for an exercise routine. Your body is sure to thank you.