These Are The 3 Most Important Stretches To Prevent Injury


Women's Health |

And they only take 5 mins tops…

Don’t have time for a drawn-out traditional warm-up? These three dynamic stretches will up your performance in most areas of fitness and prevent injury – in a measly five minutes. Yup, that’s all the time you need.

We know, sometimes you’re just seriously crunched for time. Or you just really don’t feel like it. But instead of skipping stretching altogether, take just a tiny amount of time to limber up. It will pay off. Trust.

READ MORE: This Total-Body Strength Move Will Make You Feel Like A Total Badass

The low-down on stretches

You don’t need to do any traditional stretching, but four to five minutes of a dynamic warm-up (getting your muscles limber by moving them) is essential for upping performance and, really importantly, preventing injury, says personal trainer and fitness expert Joe Dowdell. These are the three most important ones to cover all your bases.

1. Inchworm

Stand with your feet hip-width apart. Slowly bring your hands down to the floor and walk them forward until you’re in a push-up position. Pause, walk your feet to your hands, then slowly stand up. Do five reps.

READ MORE: These Are The 3 Worst Exercises You Can Do If You Have Sore Knees

2. Lateral Squat

Stand with your feet about twice shoulder-width apart. Keep your right leg straight as you push your hips back and to the left, bend your left knee and lower your body until your left thigh is parallel to the floor. Return to start. Do five reps on each leg.

3. Reverse Lunge

Stand with your feet hip-width apart. Step backward with your right leg and slowly lower your body until your right knee almost touches the floor. Push back to the starting position. Do five reps on each leg.

These are the 4 tightest muscles – and exactly how to stretch them. Plus: Your ‘no running required’ weighted cardio plan.

READ MORE ON: Fitness Fitness Advice Stretches

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