- Duration: 5 Minutes
- Calorie Burn: 18-26
- Difficulty: 1/5
- Equipment: No Equipment
- Training Type: Warm Up/Cool Down, Yoga/Flexibility
There is a long list of benefits to doing a cool down after every workout, but still most people continue to skip it. We know that it can be tempting to want to dedicate your scarce resource of time to just burning through your most intense, results-driven training routine that builds muscle, burns fat, or more directly meets whatever fitness goals you might be barreling towards, but the cool down is part of allows your more intense training sessions to remain effective.
Here are just a few of the ways that light cardio and stretching cool down workouts can enhance your overall performance and health:
- Cool down stretches can help improve your flexibility, which is crucial to avoiding injuries and being able to stay physically active over the years.
- A gradual decrease in physical activity allows the blood to redistribute itself properly, notably; returning to the brain and heart rather than pooling in your lower extremities, which can cause fainting, light headedness, irregular heartbeat, etc.
- Though some research has been debating this as of late, it has long been believed that cool down stretches help dissipate lactic acid buildup in the muscles, that may otherwise cause delayed onset soreness (DOMS) the next day.
- The body gets a chance to reregulate all of the systems that have been engaged throughout your workout sessions; your heartbeat, circulation, body temperature, hormones, etc.
Ideally, a person would spend 10 minutes doing a cool down (possibly even longer for people with certain health conditions, which is why it’s so important to talk to your doctor before you start any kind of exercise program). In the interest of “something is always better than nothing”, we have created a short, time efficient cool down and stretch video that runs through a few very light cardio exercises to bring the heart rate back down, and then a series of stretches held for 20 seconds each. If time allows, it would be a good idea to do a few minutes of additional light cool down cardio before starting this video, or even doing the video twice.
Even if you haven’t just finished a workout, you can still benefit from this routine. This short cool down routine can also be a great way to mentally and physically prep yourself for going to sleep.
- 4 30 Second intervals of light bodyweight cardio to bring the heart rate back down gradually
- 5 Stretches held for 20 seconds on each side of the body
30 Seconds Each:
Rocking Side Kicks
Rocking Butt Kickers + Ventral Pulls
Arm Crossover Swings + Lateral Steps
20 Seconds Each Stretch:
Rocking Inside Thigh
Wall Chest Stretch
In this video we held each position for 20 seconds, but if you like you can hold the stretches for longer. Static stretching (holding positions for longer than roughly 20 seconds, up to 30-60 seconds) is more appropriate for after a physically demanding routine, and not before.