The Cool-down after Exercise

October 21 2009

Just as important as the warm-up before exercising it is equally important to implement a cool-down segment in your exercise routine. The cool-down should be low impact and involve gentle stretching and body movements.

The reasons it is critical to warm down from your bodies perspective are:

  • Your core body temperature decrease - This will decrease the risk of a sudden fall in your body temperature. During exercising especially with cardiovascular exercise your body temerature increases. When completing this it may be a good idea depending on the air temperature to put on and extra layer of clothing to bring down your body temperature gradually.
  • Realigns the muscles used in the exercise routine - Muscles upon cooling down will contract or shorten to the body resting length. If you cool down too quickly you could greatly reduce your long term flexibility and experince muscle tightness.
  • Redirverts blood flow back to the heart - Whilst exercising the blood within your body is diverted to the area where the exercise is occuring ie: running would hav an increased bloodflow to the legs. If you don't warm down correctly you may experinec vertigo or light headed as the blood has been diverted from the brain and the heart.
  • Rids the body of waste products - The gentle stretching and movement will encourage the blood to flow back to the heart. The greater the flow of blood through the muscles will wash the waste buildup to enable the body to exit the waste.
  • Preperation for the rest of your day - As we are all busy people after a workout there are many items or things to be completed. This time can aid the realxation and provide you with a few quiet moments to plan your next tasks.

As can be seen from the above information it is important to include a warm down section in any exercise routine so that you can maximise the benefits from physical activity and continue you on your path to maximise your fitness levels.


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