Is the World’s Greatest Stretch Actually That Great? Facts vs Fiction

We all know the importance of stretching in improving mobility, balance, and range of motion while reducing the chances of injury. However, it turns out that not all stretches are created equal. This specific stretch has been called the world’s greatest stretch for years, but does this claim have any science to back it up?

What’s the world’s greatest stretch – source

Keep reading to find out everything you need to know about the so-called world’s greatest stretch. Find out what it is, how to do it, what muscles it targets, and alternatives today!

What is The World’s Greatest Stretch

The world’s greatest stretch is a dynamic stretch with a still component. It is a deep lunge that involves an arm movement that twists your body as you reach toward the ground and sky.

Muscles Involved

This stretch targets many parts of the body. It will help stretch the hips, shoulders, and spine in a single move. In fact, it engages and activates many more muscles in the body, like the legs, hamstrings, glutes, and groin. Plus, it can help strengthen the joints of the knees and ankles.

How to

To do this stretch, you will want to kneel down, with your left knee at 90 degrees in front of you. Stretch your back right leg straight behind you, lifting the knee off the ground. This is a  deep lunge. Reach down to the ground with your right hand, and lift your left hand towards the ceiling. You can reach back down, and reach up again to make it a dynamic, moving stretch.

Is the World’s Greatest Stretch Actually Great?

Stretching in and of itself is an activity that feels good because it helps to activate the parasympathetic nervous system. It engages different muscles and can stretch joints which can help prevent injury. Stretching can increase blood flow, boost mood, and enhance overall health greatly.

The world’s greatest stretch can be used in a warm-up routine and a recovery routine, meaning you can work it into your fitness journey easily. This stretch targets every major muscle in the body, engaging your core, thighs, hamstrings, hips, joints, chest, shoulders, etc. It especially highlights the muscles we overuse when we work out desk jobs.

It is also a dynamic stretch with still components, meaning it can be worked into a warm-up routine to get the body ready for a workout, or it can be placed at the end of a workout routine.

Are Any Other Stretches That Great?

There are a couple of really good stretches that are going to activate a lot of muscles as well. Here are three options you can try, besides the world’s greatest stretch!

Triangle Pose

The triangle pose will engage the legs and back muscles while stretching the hips, thighs, hamstrings, calves, spine, chest, and shoulders. Start in a mountain pose, place your feet slightly wider than shoulder width. Point your right foot at a 90-degree angle and your left foot at a 45-degree angle. Bend at the hip towards your right foot, keeping your spine straight. Reach your right arm down, and left arm up to the ceiling. Hold the pose for a bit, then switch sides.

Forward Fold

A forward fold is very straightforward, ironically enough. It targets the hamstrings, glutes, spine, hips, calves, and joints in the legs. All you do is stand and while keeping your back as straight as possible, bend at the hip and reach toward the ground. You can move your feet even further apart than shoulder length for an extra stretch!

Back Bends

This stretch is especially vital in the morning, as we tend to curl forward as we sleep. It is also a good stretch for people who work at a desk hunched over. While it seems to focus on the muscles of the back, this stretch can also open up the chest, and shoulders and strengthen the neck muscles. It can even engage your core to help you stabilize as you shift backward. From a sitting or standing position, raise your hands above your head and reach backward, bending the spin comfortably. You can even do it from a lunge position if you want an extra challenge!

Quick Tips for Stretching Daily

Here are some tips to make stretching work for you. In fact, these tips can help motivate you to stretch more as it is a vital exercise to decrease the risk of injury and increase mobility.

  • Warm up before stretching – muscles are like cheese. Try to pull cheese when it’s cold, it’s likely to break. Warm it up in the microwave and you’re going to have a cheese pull without tearing. In the same way, warm up the muscles with a few jumping jacks, a short run, a walk, or any other activity that will heat up the body.
  • Make sure there’s no pain – stretching should never have pain involved. Make sure you feel a bit of pressure, but never pain in forms.
  • Take note of posture and form – For any type of stretch, pay attention to your form. Notice the stretch in your muscles. It’s normal for one side to be tighter than the other, so take note of differences and listen to your body.
  • Breathe while you’re in the stretches – ensure you are breathing deeply and purposefully in stretches. You should be comfortable enough to take breaths.

The Takeaway

The world’s greatest stretch is pretty great after all. It engages almost every muscle in the body and can really target those muscles used while you sit at a desk. You can also try other very good, maybe not great, stretches like forward fold, triangle pose, and back bend stretches. In any case, make sure you are safe while you are stretching. Warm up beforehand, breathe into the poses, pay attention to form, and listen to your body.

Health starts from within, eat well but treat yourself, exercise when you can, but take rest days,  and take care of your mental wellbeing. Don’t forget about microbiota health too! Microbiota affects the entire body, from metabolism to muscles, from mental health to immune health, and more! Get all the resources you need about microbiota health for free here!

Spread the love

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *