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All about flexibility: how to get flexible fast

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22 December 2021|3 min read

Key Points

  • Flexibility offers many benefits for your body and your health.
  • If you want to improve your flexibility, regular stretching is important. 
  • Yoga practice may also be beneficial for flexibility as many yoga poses elongate the muscles.

We don’t all need the type of flexibility that allows us to wrap our legs around our ears. But flexibility is a good thing. And it’s probably more important than many people realise. 

So often we talk about the benefits of lifting weights and the benefits of HIIT, but what about the benefits of flexibility? Flexibility isn’t just about being able to bend over and touch your toes. It’s about being able to comfortably perform everyday tasks. 

If one of your fitness goals is learning how to get flexible fast, read on as we talk about all things flexibility. 

Why is flexibility important?

You know that you need to be flexible so you may do things like tying your shoelaces. But what else could it do for you? The answer is lots of things.

For starters, there’s injury prevention. How does warming up prevent injury? It prepares your body and your muscles for what’s about to come. Stretching has a similar effect, so flexibility may actually be linked to the incidence of sports injury

Old age might be a while away for you yet, but flexibility may help with preventing falls in the elderly. Improved flexibility has also been linked to better functional movement.

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Flexibility isn’t just about being able to bend over and touch your toes.

How to get flexible fast

Just like you may find the best exercises to tone arms, the best compound exercises or the best bodyweight exercises for glutes, there are also good exercises for flexibility. You don’t need any particular at home gym equipment – you could probably do most flexibility exercises anywhere.

So how can you become more flexible? You stretch.

When you stretch you elongate your muscles. If you don’t stretch, your muscles remain short and tight – which isn’t helping your flexibility. 

Even if you haven’t done a workout, the realities of modern life still affect your muscles. Sitting at a desk for long periods or carrying a baby around all day may tighten your muscles. Stretching is what could help to lessen this impact – it’s not just a way to get rid of sore muscles

If you’re wondering how to become flexible in one week, you probably need to be realistic about just how much change you may see. A week is a very short period of time. If you’re learning how to do a pull up, you’re not going to expect to be able to do ten pull ups in a row within a week. 

Try adding in a couple of stretches while you’re doing your core exercises at home. Do them while you’re watching TV at night or take breaks during the walk day to stretch your muscles out.

Fun fact: stretching may be more effective at reducing blood pressure than brisk walking. If you’ve set yourself a smart fitness goal to walk 10000 steps per day, you might want to consider adding stretching to your routine.

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Stretching is an important part of improving your flexibility.

Does flexibility help with running?

If you’re a runner looking for ways to improve your performance, could flexibility help?

Runners may benefit from stretching and flexibility. Specifically, running economy could be enhanced when runners are at optimum flexibility.

General evidence also suggests that stretching is linked to increased athletic performance. 

How does yoga increase flexibility?

Yoga has a number of different benefits. One of them is flexibility. Many yoga poses help to stretch your muscles. This in turn may have a beneficial effect on flexibility. 

Ongoing yoga practice could help to loosen muscles as well as reduce the incidence of aches and pains. It also takes joints through their full range of motion, which is beneficial for mobility. 

In fact, yogic benefits were observed during a study involving male college athletes. After ten weeks of yoga practice, the young athletes had improved flexibility and balance. Researchers also saw similar flexibility gains in a group of elderly people who practiced yoga at least three times a week for a full year. 

So if you want to get flexible fast, maybe it’s time to bring out the downward dogs and sun salutations. You could also find many free yoga online workouts to guide your practice.

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Yoga can help reduce muscle tightness, and general aches and pains.

Why are women more flexible?

If you’re wondering why you’re more flexible than the menfolk in your life, it could be related to biology. Basically, differing anatomy and muscle distribution may be the reason behind flexibility differences among family members. 

The way to become more flexible for men is the same as it is for women. Stretching. Why not make it a 30 day family fitness challenge so you all improve your flexibility by stretching every day?

Flex it

Should you exercise every day or take a day off? Unlike worrying about the signs of overtraining for some types of exercise, if you could fit in stretching for flexibility every day then go for it. 

Stretch it to flex it. Your body may thank you.

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Reviewed by the healthylife Advisory Board November 2021.

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This article is for informational purposes only and does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Any information published on this website or by this brand is not intended as a substitute for medical advice. If you have any concerns or questions about your health you should consult with a health professional.