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Club Pilates Expert and Physical Therapist on Stretching in SELF Magazine


Is it better to stretch in the morning or at night?

There’s no real consensus on which time of day is best for stretching, Femi Betiku, DPT, an instructor at Club Pilates at the Westchester and North East Jersey studios, tells SELF. Both times of the day have their benefits, and it really depends on the individual as to when you want to slot in some stretching.

For example, Betiku says morning stretch routines may be beneficial if you wake up stiff and feel like you need to loosen up. On the other hand, evenings may be more beneficial if you spend a lot of time throughout the day in one position, like sitting at a desk, driving, or standing.

The only caveat is to make sure your body is warm before stretching, especially in the morning and before doing any static stretching, when your muscles are cold, stiff, or tight.

Any aerobic activity that increases your heart rate and gets your body moving will do the trick. Walking, high knees, jogging in place, jumping jacks, or a combination of moves will work.

Is it okay to stretch every day?

When it comes to how often you can stretch, Betiku says it’s absolutely OK to stretch every day. That applies to dynamic stretching or static stretching—or you may want to alternate between the two depending on your specific goals that day.

“Dynamic is best for optimizing performance, while static may be more beneficial for improving the function of overworked muscle groups,” he says.

Read more of Dr. Femi's expert advice, plus what apps experts recommend for stretching, on SELF

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