Why stretch ?
Stretch out your muscles to wake up muscles or muscle groups. For joints, stretching helps to increase flexibility to avoid musculotendinous injuries.
Stretching enables you to:
Maintain amplitude of movement (which decreases muscle stiffness).
Reduce the risk of injuries.
When to stretch?
Stretch for 10 minutes after you finish warming up.
For regular runners: stretch for 10 minutes after training or racing
Your 4-stage stretching routine:
Start in the starting position.
Gradually move into the stretching position (5 to 10 seconds).
Hold the stretch (for 5 to 10 seconds) while breathing out.
Gradually return to the starting position (5 to 10 seconds).
Hold the stretch for 5 to 10 seconds and repeat each stretch 2 or 3 times. (Or, hold the stretch once for 30 seconds to help reduce stiffness).
After an intense training session, it is better to wait for 30 minutes before stretching so that you don't aggravate microlesions in the muscles which might have appeared during your training
Enjoy your training!