It shouldn’t need to be said but working out puts our muscles through a hard time. Immediately after a workout, you may not feel anything but joy, accomplishment, and a burst of energy but soon, soreness may come. Sore muscles, also known as tight muscles, can be due to many different reasons. In fact, even just sitting for a prolonged period of time can cause tight muscles. It’s important to know how to loosen tight muscles because they will hinder athletic performance in multiple ways.
Loosen tight muscles in just a few easy steps to make sure you avoid injury or hinder your workout progress.
Heat Things Up
When muscles are warm, their elasticity increases and there are many ways to warm them up. Simply walking or doing light exercise will warm up muscles enough to increase elasticity. If walking doesn’t seem to work, a hot bath, shower, or trip to the sauna will do the trick. However, walking or light exercise may be the best option as it will increase your heart rate and bring blood to the tight muscles.
Stretch Warm Muscles
Stretching before a workout is a good idea, even if you don’t have any tight muscles. To increase your odds of success, stretch while your muscles are warm. Once your muscles are warm, stretch every muscle. A proper stretch requires you to hold the stretching position for at least 15 seconds per stretch. Every muscle that can be stretched should be stretched at least twice a week. Of course, if you work out regularly and stretch before each workout, you should be fine.
Roll Them Out
One of the current, most popular ways to loosen tight muscles is to use a foam roller. Foam rollers are inexpensive and easy to find online or at sports equipment stores. The roller can come in many different lengths but is usually about 6-inches in diameter. How it works is simple, place the roller on the floor, under the part of your body that is tight. Place your body weight on top of the muscle and roller and roll out the muscle. The tightness will be gone in no time.
Water is a workout junkie’s best friend. Drinking plenty of water will help keep muscle cells supple and flush out toxins. The goal is to drink water during and after a workout. While water may taste plain and you may want to reach for a sugary substitute, don’t. Avoid sugary drinks as much as possible. Not only are the sugary drinks not good for you, they won’t help tight muscles at all.
Stretching your muscles is very important and believe it or not yoga is perfect. Yoga is a workout but it also asks you to hold muscles in stretched positions for extended periods of time. There are even yoga classes that are made for stretching out muscles that you can sign up for. If you can, sign up for the class and take it twice a week.
Massages are a fantastic way to relax, cure tightness and take a breather every now and then. Be sure to visit a certified massage therapist every once in a while. While your massage is underway, focus on your breathing and when it’s finished, drink plenty of water.
One natural health supplement that can aid tight muscles is magnesium. Magnesium will help your muscles relax and can be found in food items like almonds, spinach, fish, and squash. Adding these foods to your diet should be easy and will help make sure you don’t experience tight muscles.