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6 Stretches for a Thinner and More Supple Body

6 Stretches for a Thinner and More Supple Body

Stretch to become more flexible

Still can not get the results you want with your exercise routine? This is certainly because your muscles are too tight. When a group of muscles, like your quadriceps muscles, is rigid and too tight, it prevents others, like your glutes, from working properly. In the end: it is your performance that is compromised (and your ability to burn calories), not to mention an increased risk of hurting yourself.

Good old static stretching, where you bend and hold this position for what you always think is an eternity, is not necessarily the most effective approach to developing your flexibility. A new method called “Stretch and Fire” gives excellent results. Based on a principle called technical “Active-Isolated” ( Active-Isolated ), this principle involves contracting a muscle group while stretching another. This technique triggers a muscular reflex that increases the range of motion and allows for greater stretching. Better still, her workout technique – which targets the muscles that remain tense for most women – only takes a few minutes a day.

Try these six stretches after your usual cardio workout or after your session with weights (try doing them at least six times a week). You’ll see an improvement in your flexibility in just two weeks and you’ll gain strength and endurance in less than a month.

1. Dynamic Pigeon (Active Pigeon)

Purpose:  Stretching of the piriformis muscle (a deep gluteal muscle)

  • Start by placing yourself in the starting position of a pump with the palms aligned under your shoulders.
  • Place your left knee near your shoulder, foot on the ground and left heel near the right hip.
  • Lower your forearms and bend your leg to the side so that the left side of your foot touches the ground.
  • Bomb the chest.
  • If you are more flexible, lower your upper body while extending your arms in front of you.
  • Align your spine properly and contract your pelvic floor muscles, just like the right side gluteal muscles.
  • Bend the toes of your right foot while pressing with the tip of your foot on the ground, pushing with the heel.
  • Bend your knee and touch the side of your foot on the floor. Do 5 reps in total, then reverse the positions of your legs and do another set.

2. Curve in C (C-Curve)

Purpose:  Stretching the lower back and lumbar

  • Sit on the floor, knees bent, feet on the floor, about 30 centimeters apart.
  • Interlace your fingers once you have placed your hands behind your hamstrings, pointing your elbows to the sides.
  • Round back, contract your pelvic floor muscles and stretch your spine; inhale through the nose.
  • While exhaling, contract your muscles even more and lift your left leg.
  • Return to the initial position and repeat the exercise.
  • Do 5 repetitions; change sides and start again.

3. Variation of the Cobra

Objective:  Stretching the abdominals

  • Lie down on the floor with your hands on the floor, thumbs just below your shoulders, and extend your legs, leaving the toe in contact with the floor.
  • Contract the muscles of your pelvic floor, and move your hips to the ground while squeezing the gluteal muscles.
  • Contract your shoulders.
  • Push on your hands using your thumbs and index fingers to lift your chest.
  • Relax, return to the initial position and start again.
  • Do 5 reps in total.

4. Muscle Stretching behind the thigh (Ischio-Jambiers)

Purpose:  Stretches of the hamstrings

  • Place a small folded towel behind your head and lie on the floor on your back with your legs straight and your feet bent.
  • Bend your right knee and place your hands behind your hamstrings and entwine your fingers as close to the groin as possible.
  • Contract the pelvic floor muscles and stretch your leg, pushing on the heel and contracting the quadriceps muscles.
  • Return to the initial position and repeat, make 5 repetitions.
  • Repeat and turn the thigh out for another 5 repetitions.
  • Relax and repeat the movement by turning the thigh inward for 5 repetitions.
  • Change your leg and do a series of 15 repetitions for each leg in total.

5. Squats in front slot

Purpose:  Quadriceps and calf muscle stretching

  • Stand upright, feet apart from the width of your hips.
  • Advance the right foot about 30 cm.
  • Fold the toes of your left leg; spread the weight of your body between your two feet. Interlace your fingers after placing your hands on your belly under the ribs; lower your shoulders.
  • Contract the pelvic floor muscles; go down the pelvis and tighten the gluteal muscles.
  • Slowly bend both knees, counting to 3; you must feel your left quadriceps muscles stretching.
  • Return to initial position counting again to three.
  • Do 5 repetitions; change sides and start again.

6. Quadrupeds

Purpose:  Shoulder Stretches

  • Put on all fours, arms aligned with your shoulders, knees under the hips, toes bent towards the ground.
  • Move your head closer to the ground by sliding your left hand in front of you (keep the palm of your right hand flat on the ground).
  • Lower the shoulders and contract your gluteal muscles.
  • Return to the initial position by pressing your right palm and sliding your left hand to bring it back to your original position.
  • Do 5 repetitions; change sides and start again.

The best time to stretch

Question: “What is the best time to stretch – before or after your workout?”

Answer: “Some studies have shown that stretching just before doing your workout can actually reduce your performance,” says Mike Bracko, director of the Hockey Research Institute in Calgary, USA, and Member of the American College of Sports Medicine.

One theory: As you stretch, the muscle protein filaments extend and lie flat for a short time, weakening the muscle for about 10 to 15 minutes. Warm up to increase blood flow, then stretch at the end of your workout, when your muscles are more flexible.

The part of the body that you forget, but that you have to work

You have probably already heard that Kegel exercises can strengthen the muscles of your pelvic floor especially after pregnancy and they allow to have a sex life more fulfilled. But these movements (developed by Arnold Kegel in the late 1940s) are also essential for developing your stabilizing muscles that are important for all movements.

It is essential to strengthen the muscles of your pelvic floor and your deep abdominal muscles. These muscles work together to create a solid foundation on which your whole body rests.

Develop your deep abdominal muscles and those of your pelvic floor

  • To engage this part of the body, think of urinating twice, stop before you finish and start again.
  • Keep your muscles contracted while soliciting your spine.
  • Hold this position during each stretch.