* Stretching has a range of benefits, including the prevention of sports-related injuries
* Done incorrectly, stretching can put a strain on tendons and ligaments
* These products make stretching easy and keep your body safe
Love it or hate it, stretching is a necessary part of working out. Both before and after your strength or cardio training, you should be giving your muscles a warm up and cool down. Not only does stretching prevent sports-related injuries, it also increases flexibility, blood flow and range of motion, improves physical performance and posture and works wonders for stress relief.
While a mat and a few blocks might suffice, these 5 stretching devices will help you take control of your stretching routine by making it more enjoyable and effective.
1. Imperial Home Dual-Function Back Stretcher Device
Enjoy a gentle massage as you stretch your back with the Imperial Home Back Stretcher. The compact device sports two rows of trigger points that provide gentle relief as you use its curved structure to stretch your back. To ensure you don’t over stretch yourself, the stretcher features four adjustable levels so you can choose what feels the most comfortable. It can also be strapped to the back of any chair to provide support for your back as you sit.
2. Gradient Fitness Stretching Strap
The Gradient Fitness Stretching Strap is a versatile fitness tool that can be used during a number of different workouts including yoga, Crossfit and physical therapy. The neoprene-padded handles provide comfort as you work out or stretch while the premium nylon webbing is more durable and less elastic than that included on most resistance bands. It also comes with an easy-to-carry bag so taking your band with you is simple. In addition, the band features 12 individual stretching loops, which means you will be able to work at the level you feel most comfortable, and you’ll have plenty of opportunity to progress when you are ready.
3. VIVE Foot Rocker
Although often forgotten, the lower half of your leg and your foot need to be stretched out too, especially if you’re an avid runner or suffer from plantar fasciitis. The VIVE Foot Rocker does just that by gently and evenly moving your foot back and forth, thereby isolating your lower leg muscles, ligaments and tendons for a deep stretch. The rocker was designed for safe use with non-slip treads and an angled foot plate. Plus, the mid-foot gap means this device can also be used to strengthen the ankle as well.
4. Ideal Stretch Hamstring Stretching Aid
If you are similar to many gym goers, your hamstrings are most likely quite tight. Give your legs a break and loosen up those muscles with this Ideal Stretch Hamstring Aid, which the company claims is the most effective hamstring stretching device on the market. It allows you to lay flat on your back while stretching one hamstring and calf simultaneously and thereby relieving any knee or lower back pain you may be suffering because of your tight legs. The device is made from lightweight yet durable steel for easy use.
5. Invertio Inversion Table
Any practitioner of yoga knows the benefits of inversions. Staying upside down for an extended period can increase blood flow and therefore energize. In addition, this inversion table looks a little sily, but it’s great for decompression therapy. If you suffer from back or neck pain, strapping yourself into such a device can take the pressure off your spine and therefore help with pain relief throughout the day. This particular table has great reviews on Amazon and is significantly cheaper than its competitors.