Stretching is one of those activities that seems to get picked on a lot. Sometimes, we’re told that we absolutely need to stretch before exercising, while other times we’re told it doesn’t matter. AsapSCIENCE breaks down the science of it all and shows us which activities benefit from stretching and which don’t.
In sports that require flexibility, such as figure skating or snowboarding, stretching is helpful. However, too much stretching can actually decrease muscle strength in power sports, such as speed skating and bobsledding. Regardless, there’s little evidence that stretching actually decreases soreness. It’s more beneficial to do a warm up, where you slowly increase physical activity before hitting your full stride.