It is called stretching to the act and result of stretching or stretching. The action of stretching, meanwhile, has several uses according to what is accepted by the Royal Spanish Academy (RAE) in its dictionary.

The first meaning mentioned by the RAE It refers to extend or lengthen something. Stretching can also consist of loosen up; getting what was bent is no longer so; or encourage one thing to remain tense.

Woman stretching

Stretching is important to minimize the risk of injury when exercising.

Stretching and physical activity

Stretching is part of physical or sports warm-up. In this framework, the activity involves the development of a series of gentle movements that allow increasing the joint width and prepare the muscles to subject them to a higher intensity effort.

Thanks to stretching and other warm-up routines, the risks of suffering from injury when training or exercising. Stretching reduces the level of lactic acid present in the muscles, minimizing tension, increasing flexibility and promoting mobility.

Although it is often neglected, stretching is relevant in any training or physical activity. It is essential to stretch both before and after exercise to prevent eventual physical damage.

Why it is important to stretch your muscles

We said lines above that stretching contributes to increasing the flexibility. This is key as flexible muscles have greater resistance to effort.

Stretching also helps reduce muscle tension. So the person wins agility, facilitating movements.

Because the tension of the muscles grows with the effort, when stretching after the training it is possible to recover the relaxation. Thats why he pre-stretch and the back stretch they are essential.


It is important not to overstretch which can cause damage.

When and how to stretch

It is convenient to start the preparation with the cardiovascular warm-up that allows to increase the temperature of the muscles, open the airways and increase the pulsations progressively. This phase usually consists of a jog of a few minutes. Then you should work on the joint mobility before moving on to stretching.

Thus, after about ten minutes of exercise, you can start the stretch on yourself. First a easy stretch without straining the muscles, and then go forward until experiencing a moderate tension.

Once you feel this tension, you have to hold the position for between ten and fifteen seconds. In case it appears pain, you need to relax since a overstretching.

At a general level, it can be said that stretching always has to be done gently and without forcing the body: jerks and bounces are not positive. Anyway, to take care of health, it is advisable to consult a professional regarding the best way to stretch taking into account individual athletic and organic conditions and by virtue of the exercise to be carried out.

Another use of the concept

The RAE He also mentions that the idea stretching may refer to conceit or to vanity. A snooty person is proud and arrogant and tends to behave with affectation.

Stretching, in this sense, implies a way of acting that reflects a feeling superiority. In other words, the uptight subject believes that others are inferior to him.