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Tips for Injury Prevention: Stretching

Stretching exercises are an important component in any physical therapy program. Within the world of physical therapy, there are a number of different injuries seen and treated. Everything from muscle strain, to neck pain and back pain, or overuse of tendons and tightness or decreased range of motion can be minimized and treated with the help of physical therapy. Some of the factors - aside from strain and overuse – that contribute to tension and pain are increased stress and tension, repetitive movements, and those who are sedentary day in and day out; all these situations can greatly benefitfrom regular stretching. Many of us are mixed up when it comes to stretching because we wait to feel pain before we stretch, or we stretch until we feel pain. However, if you wait for pain, you’re repetitively irritating that muscle and it could cause it to flare up more. The best way to stretch your muscles is to push or pull until you feel a gentle stretch, and then hold it for about 20-30 seconds; it should always be comfortable. You don’t ever want an increased amount of pain after stretching. The great thing about stretching is that you can do it standing, lying down, sitting – anytime you want to stretch, and anywhere you are. Click to listen as Physical Therapist Dominic Turnerexplains further how stretching can help prevent pain and injury.

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