Stretch Yourself to Safe, Effective Exercise

Older woman stretching on a mat in front of an open laptop

If you’re new to exercise or returning after a bit of time, remember to take this important step at the beginning: Stretch!

As we age, our bodies might feel tight, for no obvious reason. If we’re inactive, we might have curious aches or feel slow to move.

Stretching helps with all of this and more, especially at the beginning of your new or renewed fitness journey. If you’ve been inactive even for a short while, you’ll need to loosen up and warm the muscles before going directly to the super-important strength training or cardio workouts.

It just makes sense, right? If you’ve been working at a desk for 30 years, you might have rounded shoulders, tight chest muscles, and shortened hip flexors. Same with, oh, say… too much inactivity for any reason.

So start stretching, and move on to the weights and the rest.

You can also try yoga, Pilates, or tai chi. If you want to walk upright and relieve back pain, try one of these classes and you’ll feel better right away.

Stretching is important for everybody, but even more as we age because muscles naturally shrink over time, losing elasticity. Tight muscles create tension, poor posture, and joint issues, starting a chain reaction of dysfunction in our bodies.

Talk to us about getting started, whether you’ve never exercised or it’s been a while. We’ll show you safe, effective stretches you can do anywhere. And we’ll show you how stretching fits into the big picture of healthy living.

Come on… Stretch yourself!


Holly Kouvo is a personal trainer, functional aging specialist, senior fitness specialist, brain health trainer, writer, and speaker.

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