Lower Body Dynamic Stretches

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Lower Body Dynamic Stretches

In order to prepare the lower half of the body for exercise, warming up with a few dynamic stretches can make a difference.

By practicing these movement-based lower-body dynamic stretches, you can decrease the risk of injury, increase mobility, and have an overall safer and more effective workout.

Of course, it’s always important to check with your doctor before starting any physical exercise routine, including stretching. By working with your doctor or physical therapist, you can make sure that these stretches are safe for you, and make any special adjustments or modifications if necessary.

So let’s take a look at a few lower-body dynamic stretches that are suggested by the health experts at The Arthritis Foundation. These four easy lower-body stretches are a great way to safely exercise the body and/or prepare for an exercise.

1. Hip Circles

Stand on one leg, using a countertop for support, and gently swing the opposite leg in circles out to the side.

Do 20 circles in each direction.
Switch legs.

Progressively increase the size of the circles as you become more flexible.

2. High-Stepping

Stand with your feet parallel and shoulder-width apart.

Step forward with the left leg and raise the right knee high toward your chest (use a wall for balance, if needed).

Use both hands (or one, if using the other for balance) to pull the knee up farther.

Pause and lower right leg, then repeat on the other side.

Continue “high-stepping” five times on each leg as you walk forward.

3. Heel-to-Toe Walk

Stand with feet shoulder-width apart.

Take a small step forward, placing your right heel on the ground and rolling forward onto the ball of your foot.

Rise as high as possible on your toes, while bringing the left foot forward and stepping in the same heel-to-toe roll.

Repeat five times on each leg.

4. Lunges with a Twist

Stand with your feet parallel, then take an exaggerated step forward (keep one hand on a wall for balance, if needed) with your right foot, planting it fully on the floor in front of you.

Allow the knee and hip to bend slowly while keeping your torso upright.

Keep your right knee directly over the ankle – do not allow it to go beyond your toes.

Slightly bend your left knee, lowering it until it is a couple of inches above the floor (or as far as flexibility allows).

In this position, reach overhead (skip the overhead reach if your shoulders are compromised) with your left arm and bend your torso toward the right.

Return your torso to an upright position, and step forward with the left foot, back to starting position.

Repeat five times on each side.
(Note: Do not attempt this if you have trouble with balance.)

Remember, it’s always best to consult with your doctor before starting any exercise routine, including dynamic stretching. Your doctor can tell you which stretches should be adjusted or avoided if necessary.

For more information on dynamic stretching, and some help with technique, you may want to check out the following video series.

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