Some days, just putting on your spandex can be a hurdle, let alone working out. And if you’re pressed for time or have a million other things to tick off that to-do list, you might wrap up your jog, cycle or strength training session and immediately hit the shower. But stretching is a crucial part of a healthy workout routine and skipping out on it could have consequences past feeling a little stiff the next day.
“Flexibility is important because it allows the muscles and joints to move through a full range of motion,” said Tim Waanders, a physical therapist at Finish Line Physical Therapy in New York. “If your flexibility is limited, it can place stress on other structures or muscle groups that aren’t able to handle an increased load.”