Why You Shouldn’t Stretch Before You Run – Women’s Running

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The conventional wisdom on static stretching is that flexible runners are less injury-prone. This belief is played out every day as runners strike stretching poses to “loosen up” before a run—ostensibly to feel good, run faster and prevent muscle strain.

It’s time to confront that conventional wisdom. Because it’s wrong.

See, runners don’t need that much flexibility. After all, we’re endurance athletes, not gymnasts. The ability to do a split or even touch your toes is not an indication that you’re particularly resilient to injuries or have better running aptitude.

In fact, static stretching before a run may actually increase your injury risk and decrease performance—exactly the opposite of what a proper warm-up ought to do.

That’s because the vast majority of running injuries occur within the normal range of motion of running. You don’t need more…

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