Stretching equipment can mean the difference between a good stretch and possibly damaging your back. Proper equipment, coupled with proper usage of said equipment, will allow you to rest assured that you're getting the most out of any exercise.
Why use Stretching Equipment?
Any exercise has the potential to cause damage to our bodies. The human body was designed and has evolved over the years with certain limitations that everyone has to be careful about. Even within our own bodies a certain motion of exercise that one muscle group may enjoy may be totally impossible for another muscle group to do. And besides relaxing muscles, stretching may involve trying to increase overall flexibility and range of movement.
Stretching is done to warm up the muscles and get the body ready for varied range of movements that exercise will require. Though many people take it for granted, the structure of the back and its accompanying muscles require special attention. It is among the most central group of muscles in the human body, responsible for supporting almost all other muscle groups during exercise. Whether working your legs or arm muscles, the back almost always plays a role. That's why it is important to take care to use the best back stretching equipment that you can.
Recommended Stretching Equipment
All recommended equipment is easy to use and provides tangible functional benefits. All should feel stable and reliable, as many of the back stretches can be dangerous if the equipment is neither one of those.
Pilates always seems to be popular with celebrities and for good reason. Pilates is proving to have real benefits to stretching and fitness, and the stretching equipment it uses plays a big role in this. The Pilates equipment involves a pulley system with a backrest close and horizontal to the ground whereby you lay on it to perform your stretches. This is safe as there is no risk of falling or slipping. Utilize the stretching exercises to safely stretch your back.
Another popular piece of back stretching equipment looks more like a torture device, though it can be helpful. It involves strapping your feet into a rotating backrest that allows you to rotate so you're dangling upside down from your feet. This provides a good back stretch as your weight works to stretch out your back.
Another simple piece of stretching equipment is an arched bench rest. It's essentially the same as a weight bench used for strength training but with arched back support that will allow you to easily stretch your back. This is a solid piece of equipment because most of your weight is comfortably supported while yielding maximum stretchability.
Last but not least is the simplest of all. A good old padded yoga mat might be the only stretching equipment you need, provided you stick to proper form. It's definitely among the cheapest you'll find as well. The only problem is that it provides the least amount of guidance.
Try these recommended pieces of stretching equipment for enjoyable and worry free back stretching.