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.
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.
- 1 Why You Should Warm Up Before Walking on the Treadmill ?♀️
- 2 Why You Should Stretch as a Warm-up ?♂️
- 3 Stretching Exercises Before Walking on the Treadmill ?
- 4 Benefits of Cooling Down ?
- 5 Lower Body Cool-Down Exercises for After Walking ?
- 6 Bottom Line ?
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:
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.
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.
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 the position for 20-30 seconds.
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
The hamstring refers to the three muscles in the back of your upper leg, connecting the hips to the knees.
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
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.
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.
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.
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.
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:
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.
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
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.
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.
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.
Place your feet hip-width apart. Bend forward slowly from your hip joints as you exhale.
Put your hands on the ground or the back of your ankles.
Lean your head between your arms and engage your core.
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 ?
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.
Last update on 2023-09-24 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API