Best Stretches To Do Before Walking
By operating with fixed sections for active movements is a better way to lubricate joints, reduce the risk of injury, and get the blood flowing to the muscles for walking, studies find. Try these four movements that show how to warm to walk, courtesy of Tom Dooley, national coach steps for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s Team in Training, before your next workout for a natural and comfortable smooth ride.
Why: Loosens tight hips
How: Balance on your right leg (hold a chair or wall for support) with left leg bent so heel is behind you. Rotate left leg out to left side and forward as if drawing a circle with knee. Do 15 times, then switch legs.
Why: Relaxes shoulders and neck
How: Stand with arms at sides. Circle right arm up in front of you overhead, and then down behind you (like swimming the backstroke). Do 15 circles, then switch arms and repeat.
3. Foot Rock-Overs
Why: Stretches arches
How: Stand with feet staggered, right foot flat about 12 inches behind left foot, left toes lifted off floor. Shift weight forward, simultaneously lowering left toes and rolling onto ball of right foot, lifting right heel. Reverse to start. Do 15 times, switch feet, and repeat.
4. Heel Raises
Why: Strengthens calves
How: Stand with feet parallel, hip-width apart, hands on a chair or wall for support, if needed. Lift heels and raise onto toes for 2 seconds, then lower. Do 15 times. Repeat with heels together and toes pointing out, then with toes together and heels out.