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How to Stretch Before Walking on the Treadmill

    Stretching is a vital part of any workout routine. Do you think to yourself, “should I just hop on the treadmill and start walking, or should I warm up first”? This article will look at how to stretch before walking on the treadmill.

    Before walking on the treadmill, it’s best to warm up your quadriceps, hip flexors, calf, and lower back muscles. Stretching will cause more blood flow to the muscles, making them warm, ready, and injury-proof.

    How To Stretch Before Walking On The Treadmill

    Also, read on for our guide to treadmill warm-ups and stretching exercises.  

    See the table below if you are in a hurry to see the best treadmills and other equipment to help with your stretching.

     

    Why You Should Warm Up Before Walking on the Treadmill 🚶‍♀️

    Why You Should Warm Up Before Walking on the Treadmill

    Warming up is the most important part of an exercise, be it a simple walk on the treadmill, a run, or extreme sports.

    There’s a high chance of getting injured without a proper warm-up despite your strength level. 

    An ideal walking routine should be like the letter “A.” You begin slowly, raise your speed, and lower yourself to finish.

    That’s why every walking workout needs a built-in warmup and cooldown.

    Stretching prepares your body for aerobic activity. 

    Through a warmup: 

    • Your cardiovascular system gets gradually revved up.
    • Your body temperature rises. 
    • The blood flow to the muscles increases.
    • Muscle soreness decreases.
    • Flexibility and range of motion improve.
    • The risk of injury reduces.

    Aside from the physical benefits, warming up gets you mentally prepared.

    You can completely miss the mark if you jump into a workout without being prepared.

    Working out can be challenging, but if you take the time to remind yourself why you’re exercising, you’ll be less likely to give up.

    Take the time when stretching to think about the exercises you’re about to do, and ease your mind into doing a more intense workout. See our post on how to use a leg stretcher for more information.

     

    Why You Should Stretch as a Warm-up 🙆‍♂️

    Warm-ups and stretching are complementary. When performing a workout properly, stretching will increase blood flow to your muscles.

    This will allow your body to become more flexible in the short and long term. 

    Flexibility and an increased range of motion in your joints can allow workouts like walking and running to be more comfortable. 

    Remember to choose the right type of stretching.

    While dynamic stretching is ideal for warm-up before working out, active, passive, and static stretches are better as a cool-down.  

     

    Stretching Exercises Before Walking on the Treadmill 😀

    It’s important not to stretch cold muscles, so jog in your place for a few seconds before starting these exercises.

    Hold each stretch for about 20-30 seconds.

     

    Quadriceps 

    Quadriceps

    The quadriceps are the largest muscles in the body. You can find them on the front of the thigh.

    These muscles extend your leg while walking, so stretching and warming them up is essential before workouts. 

    To start the stretch, stand upright and keep a good posture. Grab one leg with your hand and pull it back and up.

    Keep your back straight and chest upwards. 

    Hold on to the treadmill handle or a wall with the other hand to find balance. 

    Hold the position for 20-30 seconds.

     

    Calf Stretch

    Calf Stretch

    The calf muscles attach your knee to the heel. These muscles are located in the back of your lower leg.

    While walking, calf muscles lift the heels and bend the ankles down for a forward move.

    So it’s essential to stretch these muscles, warm them up and boost ankle mobility. 

    To start this cool stretch, stand in front of a wall or chair. Grab with your hands and push your right leg out and behind.

    Keep your right knee straight and bend the left knee until your right leg’s calf is fully stretched.

    Hold for 20-30 seconds and repeat with the left leg.

     

    Hamstring and Ankle Stretch

    Hamstring and Ankle StretchThe hamstring refers to the three muscles in the back of your upper leg, connecting the hips to the knees.

    It’s crucial to warm these muscles up, particularly before going for a walk or run, because they’re prone to damage.  

    Take a step forward. The front leg has to remain straight, and the back leg a little bent.

    Then, move your hips forward until the back of the front leg is fully stretched. Hold for 30 seconds, get up, and repeat with the other leg. 

     

    Hip Flexor Stretch

    Hip-Flexor-Stretch

    You’ll find hip flexors in the front part of your leg just above the thigh in the pelvic area.

    Hip flexors are responsible for moving the leg upward while running or flexing the hip.

    An example of a hip flexor stretch is the half-kneeling stretch.

    To do this exercise, kneel on the floor with one knee bent at 90 degrees and one leg flat behind you. 

    Then, pull your torso to the front and gently lunge forward.

    You should feel the stretch in the front of your thigh or your hip.

    Hold for 10-30 seconds and repeat the stretch 2 or 3 times for each leg.  

     

    Arm Swings

     Arm Swings.

    This exercise helps warm up your shoulders, chest, and back muscles. Also see our post with Yoga Strap Stretches for Shoulders you can do.

    Stand straight, with your legs shoulder-width open.

    Then, start swinging your arms in a sweeping motion. Gradually get higher as far as your body allows you to. 

    Next, swing your arms to the sides. Do this for 10-30 seconds. 

     

    Leg Swings

    Leg-Swings

    This exercise warms up and prepares calves, quadriceps, hamstrings, and ankles all at the same time.

    Begin by standing on one leg and holding on to a wall for balance. Then, start swinging the other leg forward and back. Do ten reps for each leg. 

    Next, swing one leg sideways and back across your body.

    Push your leg gradually to the side as long as your body can tolerate it. Repeat 10 times for each leg. 

     

    Ready to start your exercise? Here are our top three recommended treadmills that work for various exercises.

    Preview
    Overall Best
    ProForm 505 CST Treadmill – 2016 model
    Best Alternative
    NordicTrack T Series Treadmill + 30-Day iFIT Membership
    Best Budget
    Sunny Health & Fitness SF-T7515 Smart Treadmill with Auto Incline, Speakers, Bluetooth, LCD and Pulse Monitor, Phone Function, 240 LB Max Weight , grey
    Product Name
    ProForm 505 CST Treadmill
    NordicTrack T Series Treadmills
    Sunny Health & Fitness SF-T7515
    Protects Your Joints
    Workouts Included
    Digital Display
    User Weight Capacity
    325 lbs.
    300 lbs.
    240 lbs.
    Warranty
    10-year frame warranty and 1-year parts and labor warranty.
    10-year frame warranty, 2-year parts warranty, and 1-year labor warranty.
    Not Stated.
    Overall Best
    Preview
    ProForm 505 CST Treadmill – 2016 model
    Product Name
    ProForm 505 CST Treadmill
    Protects Your Joints
    Workouts Included
    Digital Display
    User Weight Capacity
    325 lbs.
    Warranty
    10-year frame warranty and 1-year parts and labor warranty.
    Interested?
    Best Alternative
    Preview
    NordicTrack T Series Treadmill + 30-Day iFIT Membership
    Product Name
    NordicTrack T Series Treadmills
    Protects Your Joints
    Workouts Included
    Digital Display
    User Weight Capacity
    300 lbs.
    Warranty
    10-year frame warranty, 2-year parts warranty, and 1-year labor warranty.
    Interested?
    Best Budget
    Preview
    Sunny Health & Fitness SF-T7515 Smart Treadmill with Auto Incline, Speakers, Bluetooth, LCD and Pulse Monitor, Phone Function, 240 LB Max Weight , grey
    Product Name
    Sunny Health & Fitness SF-T7515
    Protects Your Joints
    Workouts Included
    Digital Display
    User Weight Capacity
    240 lbs.
    Warranty
    Not Stated.
    Interested?

     

     

    Benefits of Cooling Down 😎

    Benefits of Cooling Down

    Now that you’ve finished your walk, you’re ready to jump off the treadmill but wait, not so fast!

    Cooling down after walking or running on a treadmill is essential. 

    As you exercise, your heart rate increases, and that’s why you need to tone it down after a workout.

    Your heart rate and blood pressure will gradually return to pre-exercise levels as you cool down

    A sudden stop while exercising without reducing your heart rate can result in dizziness and lightheadedness. 

    Walking is a great way to slow down your heart rate after running.

    Here are some of the benefits of cooling down after a workout:

    • Reducing the risk of injury and muscle soreness.
    • Preventing the lactic acid build-up.
    • Lowering blood pressure (to the baseline).
    • Restoring the body to normal.
    • Reducing the body temperature.
    • Preventing blood pooling.
    • Releasing stress and relaxing the body. 

     

    Lower Body Cool-Down Exercises for After Walking 😮

    Since you work with your lower body and legs while walking, a good lower body stretching session will help you release all the tension. 

     

    Glutes

    Glute stretch

    Lie on your back and place your feet into a tabletop shape.

    Make a number four shape with your legs by crossing your right foot over your left thigh.

    Take your hands and wrap them around your left thigh. Pull the leg towards your torso each time you breathe. 

    Hold the position for 30 seconds and repeat for the left leg.

     

    Hamstring and Calves

    Hamstring and Calves

    Sit on your mat with your legs extended in front of you.

    Bend one knee and pull your leg in, making it touch the inside of your opposite knee. 

    Bend your hips and reach for your right foot (or as far as possible).

    Put your hands on your ankles or shins if you can reach your toes, or pull them gently back toward you if you can’t reach them.

    Hold the position for 30 seconds and repeat for the other leg. 

     

    Butterfly Stretch

    Butterfly Stretch

    Sit on your mat. Bend your knees and pull your legs towards you, making the foot touch.

    Focus on the muscles on the side of your thighs to pull your knees down to the floor. Keep it for 30 seconds.

    Check out these top yoga mats on Amazon, perfect for your warm-up and cool-down sessions. 

    Preview
    Overall Best
    Manduka PRO Yoga Mat – Premium 6mm Thick Mat, High Performance Grip, Support and Stability in Yoga, Pilates, Gym, Fitness, Extra Long, 85 Inches, Black Color
    Best Alternative
    IUGA Pro Non Slip Yoga Mat, Unbeatable Non Slip Performance, Eco Friendly and SGS Certified Material for Hot Yoga, Odorless Lightweight and Extra Large Size, Free Carry Strap
    Best Budget
    UMINEUX Yoga Mat Extra Thick 1/3'' Non Slip Yoga Mats for Women with Alignment Marks Eco Friendly TPE Fitness Exercise Mat with Carrying Strap & Storage Bag
    Product Name
    Manduka PRO Yoga Mat
    IUGA Pro Non Slip Yoga Mat
    UMINEUX Yoga Mat Extra Thick
    Thickness
    6MM
    5MM
    8MM
    Material
    Polyvinyl Chloride
    Polyurethane, Rubber
    TPE
    Weight
    ‎0.78 Kilograms
    2.5 lbs
    2.4 Pounds
    Dimensions
    85 x 26 x 0.24 inches
    85 x 26 x 0.24 inches
    72 x 24 x 0.31 inches
    Eco Friendly
    Overall Best
    Preview
    Manduka PRO Yoga Mat – Premium 6mm Thick Mat, High Performance Grip, Support and Stability in Yoga, Pilates, Gym, Fitness, Extra Long, 85 Inches, Black Color
    Product Name
    Manduka PRO Yoga Mat
    Thickness
    6MM
    Material
    Polyvinyl Chloride
    Weight
    ‎0.78 Kilograms
    Dimensions
    85 x 26 x 0.24 inches
    Eco Friendly
    Interested?
    Best Alternative
    Preview
    IUGA Pro Non Slip Yoga Mat, Unbeatable Non Slip Performance, Eco Friendly and SGS Certified Material for Hot Yoga, Odorless Lightweight and Extra Large Size, Free Carry Strap
    Product Name
    IUGA Pro Non Slip Yoga Mat
    Thickness
    5MM
    Material
    Polyurethane, Rubber
    Weight
    2.5 lbs
    Dimensions
    85 x 26 x 0.24 inches
    Eco Friendly
    Interested?
    Best Budget
    Preview
    UMINEUX Yoga Mat Extra Thick 1/3'' Non Slip Yoga Mats for Women with Alignment Marks Eco Friendly TPE Fitness Exercise Mat with Carrying Strap & Storage Bag
    Product Name
    UMINEUX Yoga Mat Extra Thick
    Thickness
    8MM
    Material
    TPE
    Weight
    2.4 Pounds
    Dimensions
    72 x 24 x 0.31 inches
    Eco Friendly
    Interested?

     

    Figure Four Hip Stretch

    Figure Four Hip Stretch

    Sit on a chair, lift your right leg’s ankle and cross it over the opposite thigh.

    Push your right leg’s knee out more gradually to the point you can handle.

    Look for the stretch around your hip joint. Keep the position for 20 seconds, then repeat for the opposite leg.  

     

    Forward Fold

    Forward Fold

    Place your feet hip-width apart. Bend forward slowly from your hip joints as you exhale.

    If you feel pain in the back of the knees, bend your knees as you fold forward. 

    Put your hands on the ground or the back of your ankles.

    Lean your head between your arms and engage your core.

     

    Child’s Pose

    Child’s Pose

    Start on all fours, with knees under your hips.

    Then, slowly lean and sit on your heels, folding your hips and bringing your torso to the ground.

    Extend your arms fully, rest your head on the floor, and enjoy the last stretch. 

     

    Bottom Line 👏

    Fitness Journey Treadmill

    Warm-ups and cool-downs are inseparable from workouts.

    They involve exercises at a lower intensity and slower pace, improving performance, preventing injury, and facilitating recovery after exercise. 

    Keep your workout routine like a mountain’s shape; start slow by warming up and dynamic stretching, exercise, then stretch again and cool down

    Remember, the stretching intensity and how long you hold it matters.

    Don’t overdo the stretching, as it can injure your tendons and muscles 

    Last update on 2022-05-21 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

    nv-author-image

    James Wright

    James (36) has been working out since he was 15 years old. He has a home gym where he pumps iron, does bodyweight workouts and boxing. He likes sharing his experiences with others who want to build a better physique.

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