These leg stretching exercises incorporate all the major muscle groups of the lower extremities. Side Lunge Stretch. Here are my favorite leg stretches for runners. No matter what the … Terms of Use Warmup exercises 1. Scoot up so your knees are in line with the doorway or corner. 2015;29(12):3480-3485. doi:10.1519/JSC.0000000000001007, Medeiros DM, Cini A, Sbruzzi G, Lima CS. The hamstring muscles travel from the pelvis to the back of each knee, and help to flex the knee and extend the hip. Drop your back knee down to the ground and keep the other foot planted in front of you. Bring your foot as close to your butt as possible while keeping your bent knee inline with your other knee. To stretch your legs, lay down and put one of your feet up on a wall to stretch your hamstrings, hold for 60 seconds, and repeat with the other side. HOW TO DO IT: Stand in front of a bench or chair that has a flat surface. As we age, our muscles get shorter and less elastic, she adds. Laura Inverarity, PT, DO, is a current board-certified anesthesiologist and former physical therapist. This stretch is commonly used to test someone's general flexibility. Set a barbell on a power rack at about shoulder height. Do five steps to the right and five to the left. Triangle stretch. Click the image for more details about performing the stretch. Triceps stretch. You should feel it from your hips all the way down to your knee. They help your flex your foot down. , If that's easy, drive your knee back behind your body. Many athletes, particularly runners, have tight IT bands. Am Fam Physician. The final leg stretches for splits that induces exceptional flexibility is the standing stretch. Hip flexor stretch in three planes. A very common cause of leg tightness is due to the amount of time we spend sitting throughout the work day. Leaf Group Ltd. side trunk. Lunge with a twist. HOW TO DO IT: Stand tall with your feet two inches from each other. To increase the stretch, move yourself closer to the wall. Performing a hamstring stretch routine daily can help improve the way your hamstrings move. Hold each stretch for 30 seconds, and be sure to relax as you stretch. cat stretch. Reach your right leg out straight to the side with your knee locked out. The hamstring muscles travel from the pelvis to the back of each knee, and help to flex the knee... Quadricep Stretches. Many people suffer from tight leg muscles. Reach one leg back and put the top of that foot flat on the top of the bench or chair. Working to keep your legs moving freely and fully can help you feel better about yourself, and it may help to prevent injuries. By taking a few minutes each day to perform these basic lower extremity stretches, you can help maximize your pain-free mobility. If you have any injuries, questions, or concerns, visit a physical therapist so you can learn the best way to stretch your legs. Both the calf muscle and Achilles tendon are commonly injured, so it's important to take some tension out of your calf by stretching. Try to touch your heel to your butt. This dynamic stretch is for your adductors and hamstrings. The LIVESTRONG Foundation and LIVESTRONG.COM do not endorse Quad Stretch. Henry is a freelance writer and personal trainer living in New York City. The hips and pelvis are complex joints that move in a variety of directions. Tight leg muscles can predispose you to injury during daily and recreational activities, and may even contribute to the development of back pain in some cases. To gain true flexibility, you must stretch the joints in a 360 degree range of motion with a variety of hip-opening stretches. The hamstring group also has four muscles that run down the back of your leg. If you feel like your leg muscles are tight, you may benefit from working with a physical therapist to improve your flexibility. Your PT can show you exercises you can do to help improve your overall lower extremity mobility and flexibility. Stand upright and bend one leg back, grabbing the top of that foot. Stretching routine #1. HOW TO DO IT: Stand tall with your feet close together, like you're going to do a toe touch. HOW TO DO IT: Kneel on a pad on one knee. Pull both legs toward your torso for a deeper stretch. Perform several different exercises to loosen up your gams. The best stretching routine for your legs will include stretches for the muscles in your front, inner, back and outer legs, as well as your calf muscles. Three of these muscles start at the top of your femur — the leg bone — and run down to your knee. 5 leg and thigh stretches for running. Face away from it. Hip Stretches . … 2021 Keep your upper body straight and legs apart. Kneeling Hip Flexor/Quad Stretch To stretch these muscles you'll have to pull your foot up, bringing your toes towards your shin. 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