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Cooldown Exercises After Your Workout

clarissa-carbungco-e-571M7aaVo-unsplashNow that Spring is warming temperatures in Richmond, it’s a great time to transition some of your exercise routine to the outdoors. Whether you enjoy running, walking, or use of fitness stations at your favorite park, an outdoor workout gives you the benefit of fresh air and Vitamin D from the sunshine. A proper warm-up before beginning your routine ensures good flexibility and reduced risk of injury while you exercise, but don’t forget to cool down when you finish.

Why Cool Down?

The cooldown portion of your routine is as important, if not more, than the warmup. As you conclude exercising, your heart rate remains higher than it should be when at rest. Cooldown exercises help regulate not only your heartbeat but also your blood pressure so you do not experience ill effects. Cooling down helps the rest of your body recover from the exertion as well. If you skip this crucial part of your workout, you risk muscle tears or symptoms like dizziness or nausea.

How to Cool Down

Many recommended cooldown exercises are similar to warm up routines. They are designed to keep the blood flowing and your muscles limber and ready for the next time you work out. If you are coming back from a lengthy run, for example, take a few minutes afterward for slow walking or jogging to bring your heart rate down and to even out your breathing. Stretches that focus on your legs, like a quadricep stretch that brings your heel to your backside and your knees close together, are also helpful.

For after running and other exercises, yoga stretches can help maintain flexibility and safely relax the body. Suggest poses include:

  • Seated forward bend: sit with legs straight and bend forward to touch your toes, holding the position for one minute to stretch the back of your legs and your back.
  • Downward facing dog: bending in a standing position with your back and legs straight in a reverse V, and pressing your heels to the ground one at a time for one minute.
  • Child’s pose: while sitting on your heels, stretch your arms forward until your forehead touches the ground; hold the position for about a minute.
  • Corpse pose: Lie on your back and relax your limbs and body, breathing deeply.

Contact Bon Secours Virginia Sports Performance

Whether you wish to improve your game for competition or to enjoy a favorite pastime, the expert coaches at Bon Secours Virginia Sports Performance provide the guidance you need to improve your swing or take a stroke off your game. We can also advise you on the proper cooldown techniques for your fitness level, as well as nutritional guidelines and injury prevention. Contact us today to learn more about our programs.