The 7 Best Walking Stretches

Walking stretches are an important part of your fitness routine. You want to keep your muscles and joints healthy so that you can continue to walk. They will also help you maintain your flexibility and will prevent injury.

Spend 10 to 15 minutes stretching after walking. Not only will this make you feel wonderful, but you’ll be improving the health of your muscles and joints.

The exercises listed below will also help improve the flexibility of all of your major muscle groups.

Please make sure that you know how to stretch correctly so that you don’t do more harm then good. Be sure to read the walking stretches tips at the bottom of this page.

1. Neck Stretch

This will release any tension in your neck. Consult with your doctor before doing this stretch if you’ve had any neck injuries.

· Relax your shoulders and resist the urge to bring them up to your ears · Bring your chin to your chest

· Hold for 10 seconds and return to the starting position

· Slowly lower your right ear toward your right shoulder

· Hold for 10 seconds

· Slowly lower your left ear toward your left shoulder

· Hold for 10 seconds

· Relax and repeat this sequence 5 to 10 times

neck stretch

2. Hamstring Stretch

Flexible hamstrings are important for good posture. If yours are too tight, your lower back will be less stable, which can cause injuries and pain. This is a great stretch if you have lower back pain. There are several ways to do this stretch, but I recommend the following:

Laying down:

· Lie on your back and keep your back flat

· Bend your right leg and lift it off the ground with both hands behind the thigh for support

· Slowly straighten your right knee and try to get the bottom of your foot parallel to the ceiling

· Hold for 10 seconds

· Return your right leg to the floor

· Repeat with your left leg

· Do 3 to 5 times for each leg

hamstring stretch

In a Chair:

· Sit at the edge of a chair and extend your right leg with the toes pointing toward the ceiling and the heel on the floor

· Place your hands on your left leg and lean forward slightly while holding your tummy in

· Hold for ten seconds

· Switch legs and stretch the left hamstring

3. Quadriceps Stretch

The quadriceps muscles are in the front of your thigh. They help to support your knee. · Place your left hand on a wall or chair for balance

· Grasp your right leg around the ankle and slowly lift your heel towards your buttocks

· During the stretch, keep your back straight, not arched. Do not slouch or lean forward

· Keep your right knee pointed downward and keep your right leg parallel to the left

· Hold for 10 seconds

· Switch legs and repeat with your left leg

· Do 3 to 5 times for each leg

Quadriceps stretch

4. Hip Flexor Stretch

· Kneel on the floor with your left leg slightly behind you and your right leg bent in front of you

· Ensure that your right knee is directly over your right foot · Slowly move the lower half of your body forward until you feel the stretch in your right hip area

· Repeat with the left hip

· Do 3 to 5 times for each hip

Hip Flexor Stretch

5. Arms, Shoulders and Upper Back Stretches

· Raise hands above your head and press your palms together · Hold for 10 seconds

· Relax, then repeat 3 times

· Point arms in front of you, chest level, and press palms together

· Hold for 10 seconds

· Relax, then repeat 3 times

6. Chest

A great stretch to expand your chest and increase airflow to your lungs. You will feel refreshed after this.

· Stand straight and place the palms of your hands on the lower back

· Keep your shoulders down

· Press the insides of your elbows together

· Hold for 10 seconds

· Relax, then repeat 3 times

Chest Stretch

7. Cat/Cow Stretch

This is a wonderful stretch for your back and a great way to end your stretch routine. It is also a great pregnancy stretch to help relieve the tension in your back.

· Kneel on your hands and knees and place your hands directly below your shoulders

· Push forward slightly and arch your back

· Hold for 10 seconds

· Allow your back to sag until it forms a concave shape

· Hold for 10 seconds

· Repeat 3 to 5 times

How to Stretch Properly

Follow these important tips to avoid injury while performing the walking stretches.

  • Never bounce while stretching
  • Do not overstretch. Push your body until you feel the stretch, but not so much that it is painful
  • Stretch both sides. Don’t stretch one side and forget to do the other

Walking and stretching are great ways to improve your fitnes and flexiblity. You will strengthen your bones, muscles and joints. I know you'll relaxed after completing these walking stretches and you deserve it. Enjoy!

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