We all know how important it is to stretch before and after exercising, but many of us tend to fall into the same routine of static stretching – that is, holding a stretch for about 30 seconds without moving – before getting our bodies going. Dynamic stretching, on the other hand, incorporates a range of motion with each move to warm up the muscles and prepare them for the upcoming workout. Below, we’ve outlined five dynamic stretches to try before your next workout. Perform each stretch for one to two minutes.
Ideal for: back, piriformis and glutes
To start, hug your right knee to your chest by grabbing your shin. Place your right leg back down and repeat with your left leg. Continue to alternate sides with each step.
Ideal for: calves and hamstrings
Starting in a high plank, keep your hands planted and begin to walk your feet toward your hands until you’re in a pike position. Then, walk your hands back out to high plank.
Walking Toe Touch
Ideal for: hamstrings
To start, kick your right leg straight out in front of you and reach for it with your right hand. Repeat with your left leg and left hand. Continue to alternate sides with each step.
Cross-Over Walking Toe Touch
Ideal for: IT bands
To start, kick your right leg out across your body and reach for it with your left hand. Alternate with your left leg and right hand and continue to switch with each step.
Ideal for: quads and hip flexors
To start, grab your right ankle with your right hand, performing a quad stretch, while reaching above your head with your left arm. Repeat on the opposite side and continue to alternate with each step.