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Stretching After Cardio: Chest, Back, Abs, & Hips
Most people know that doing regularly cardiovascular exercise is very important to staying healthy throughout your life. However, a lot of people don't realize that stretching after doing cardiovascular exercise is just as important. These four stretches will help keep your muscles flexible and agile so you can keep exercising regularly, and maintain your weight loss goals.
1 Wall Assisted Stretch
- Place the forearm of your right hand flat against a wall. Step away from the wall and rotate your body to the left, away from the wall. You should feel a nice stretch across your chest, shoulders, and arm. Stretch the other side.
2 Partner Chest Stretch
- Have a partner stand behind you. Lift your arms behind you so they are parallel with the floor. The partner should hold your lower arms and gently try to push your wrists together. When you have a partner assist you with a stretch, it's important to communicate with them. Tell them if they can push farther or if they need to lighten up.
1 Arched Back Stretch
- Get on your hands and knees. Arch your back as if you're trying to push your belly button to the floor. Hold for 30 seconds, then flex your back as if trying to push your belly button to the ceiling. Hold for 30 seconds.
2 Low Back Stretch
- Lay on your back. Bend your knees and bring them up to your chest. Wrap your arms around your knees and squeeze them closer to your body.
1 Lower & Upper Ab Stretch
- Lay on your stomach with the tops of your feet on the floor. Place your hands on the floor under your shoulders and gently push the upper part of your body off the floor, arching your back. You should feel a good pull in your abdominal region.
2 Oblique Stretch
- Stand tall. Place one hand on your hip and the other over your head. Bend toward the side with your hand on the hip while reaching over the top of your head with the other side.
1 Side Hip Stretch
- Lay on your back. Bend your knees so they are at a 90 degree angle with your body. Lower the knees to the right side so they rest on the floor, but your back and shoulders should still touch the ground. Straighten your right leg and cross your left leg (knee still bent) over the right leg. Use your hands to pull the left knee toward the floor. Change sides and repeat.
2 Lower Hip Stretch
- Lay on your back with your knees bent and your feet on the floor. Cross your left ankle over your right knee. Place your hands behind your thighs and pull your feet toward your body.