3 popular stretches to stop doing

straight-leg toe touch with bad form

Stretching is supposed to be good for us, but if done before adequately warmed up, or done improperly, they can cause injury. Three popular stretches are the straight-leg toe touch, standing or seated on the floor, and the hurdler stretch, stretching one leg at a time. The problem with these stretches are that they “..can severely weaken the spine…” since they are pulling the “…spinal ligaments, not the hamstrings.”

seated straight-leg toe touch with rounded back

Every time I try either of those stretches, my lower back hurts. If you still want to do these stretches, use a straight back, not a rounded back, don’t bounce, and just go to the level where you feel the stretch; a stretch should never be painful. Pain is a signal from your brain that you shouldn’t do that.


(1). Source: Hatfield PhD., Frederic. Fitness: the Complete Guide. Carpinteria: International Sports Sciences Association. 9th ed., 2018. Print. Pg. 349.

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