Fit for Life
We love to move and be active, it is an essential part of our lives. We hike the mountains at home around North Scottsdale, and find trails when we travel, visit our many lakes here in Arizona, play frisbee in the park by our house, and yes of course work out.
Although Henry and I share many outdoor activities, we do differ a little indoors. In these past few years Henry has really found his calling: Cycling. He is part of the SCOTT Bikes sponsored mountain bike and road bike team here in Arizona, but competes nationally as well.
Let’s talk about Flexibility. Why is it so important?
- Stretching increases flexibility. Flexible muscles can improve your daily performance. Tasks such as lifting packages, bending to tie your shoes or hurrying to catch a bus become easier and less tiring.
- Stretching improves range of motion of your joints. Good range of motion keeps you in better balance, which will help keep you mobile and less prone to falls — and the related injuries — especially as you age.
- Stretching improves circulation. Stretching increases blood flow to your muscles. Improved circulation can speed recovery after muscle injuries.
- Stretching can relieve stress. Stretching relaxes the tense muscles that often accompany stress.
Have you seen the body builders on Muscle Beach who only lift heavy weights? They actually are not very flexible. That is because they usually do not stretch very much, but also because their muscles are shorter due to the heavy lifting. This can cause all kinds of injuries such as muscle tearing, lactose build up etc. Yoga, Pilates and functional exercises have the opposite effect; they help elongate the muscles, thus providing more overall flexibility and better core strength. By using our own body to create resistance and energy, we continuously improve and maintain a healthy range of motion in our joints throughout our body. Maintaining flexibility in an elderly person, for example, can mean that if they fall they don’t break a hip or hurt themselves severely, because they are flexible enough to react quicker and brace their fall. Flexibility reduces our risk of injury significantly irregardless of age, gender or weight.
We believe that flexibility helps to provide us with a better quality of our daily lives, by increasing relaxation mentally and physically. It helps in reducing muscle tensions (knots) and soreness, and improves our posture.