6 Effective Cool Down Exercises You Must Do After Working Out
Is it necessary to do a cool down routine after working out and if yes, what are the stretches that one must do? Is this what you are confused about?
All those who workout, have heard that they must do a cool-down routine after their workout session. Some of us follow this while most of us do not really pay heed to it. Firstly, you must cool down after your workout. The benefits of this are:
1. Stretching after workouts help you recover. When you run, lift weights and use your body weight to lose calories or tone up, you end up exhausting your muscles. If they do not recover properly, you might end up feeling sore. Stretching helps relieve the in-built tension and prevent soreness.
2. Cooling down does not necessarily mean stretching. Walking for 5 minutes is a good cool down method, too. You can use a foam roller, as well.
3. After working out diligently, you end up giving a boost to your brain and heart. They need to be calmed down so as to get them back to their normal pace. A cool-down session helps with tuning them and lowering their elevated rates after a brisk session.
4. If you decide to stretch, you need not stretch every part of your body, i.e. you do not need to stretch for 30-45 minutes. Spend 10-15 minutes to work on only those areas that feel a little tensed and sore.
5. Cooling down also helps in returning the proper muscle balance in your body. This is with regards to the length and tension of the muscles.
There are some very basic cool down exercises that you can do after your workout is over.
Step 1: Kneel down on the floor and extend your arms in front of you. Keep your back straight and your spine neutral.
Step 2: Slowly, lower your arms and forehead towards the floor. Bend your upper body, as well. Your hips must be kept firmly on your toes. Go as low as you can and bring your forehead close to your knees.
Hold this position for 15 seconds and do 4 repetitions.
Next up: Toe Touches
Step 1: Stand straight and keep your feet together. Your knees must not be locked. Extend your arms over your head.
Step 2: Bend from your hips and lower your upper body towards the floor, with your arms still extended in front of you and your elbows close to your ear. Do not bend your knees. Touch your toes with your fingers.
Step 3: Hold this position for 15 seconds. Let your head hang between your arms.
Step 4: Get back up and repeat.
Do 4 reps of this exercise.
Next up: Upper Chest Stretch
Upper Chest Stretch
Step 1: Stand straight with your feet hip-width apart. Keep your body straight.
Step 2: Clasp your hands behind your back. Do not bend your elbows.
Step 3: Without bending your elbows, pull your chest up and your arms back. Go as high and far as you can while maintaining a tight grip. Breathe in and out.
Hold this position for 15 seconds. Relax and repeat 3 more times.
Next up: Cat Cow Stretch
Cat Cow Stretch
Step 1: Get down on all your fours. Your knees must be under your hips and your palms must be placed under your shoulders. Keep your spine neutral and back flat.
Step 2: Round and curl up your spine towards the ceiling by pulling your belly button up. Bring your chin closer to your chest. This is the cat pose.
Step 3: Now, arch your back and push your head and hip towards the ceiling. This is the cow pose.
Step 4: Get back to the cat pose and repeat.
Do this loop for 1 minute.
Next up: Quad Stretch
Step 1: With your feet hip-width apart, stand straight and keep your arms by your side.
Step 2: Bend your right knee and bring your right toe close to your butt. Use your hands to pull it further in.
Step 3: Keep your chest and shoulder up and hold this position for 30 seconds. Your body must form a straight line from your head to your left toe with your right knee in the middle.
Repeat for the other leg. Do 2 reps on each side.
Next up: Head to Knee Touch
Head to Knee Touch
Step 1: Sit down on the floor and extend your legs in front of you.
Step 2: Bend your right knee and place your right foot close to your left thigh. Keep your back straight. Your left leg must touch the floor at all times.
Step 3: Bend your upper body forward and touch your toes with your fingers. Try and touch your left knee with your forehead without bending it. Hold this position for 15 seconds. Repeat for the other side.
Do 3 reps on each side.