self_printlogoACE-certified spokesperson and Exercise Physiologist Mary Jayne Johnson, Ph.D. sees both a dark and light side to the trend: "Generally, we don't give balance and flexibility enough credit, so, it's fortunate that at least there are products prioritizing those issues."

 

On the flip-side, balance is incredibly important for athletes trying to reach their potential, so hopefully no one is relying solely on these bracelets to increase that ability:  "Over time, we develop unhealthy postural habits based on sitting at a desk or standing or holding a baby or whatever it might be and some muscles get shortened and others get tight, so flexibility must be addressed to fix that.  When our muscles are out of balance, our whole body can get out of balance, which can result in aches and pains etc.  We can't get as strong as we'd like to be unless we have optimum flexibility."

 

Johnson's suggestions for improving flexibility:

  1. "As much as you don't want to, stretch every single day!"
  2. "Be careful and don't overextend!  Stretching the wrong way can be detrimental, so take this as seriously as your cardio or weights."
  3. "At home, follow a yoga, pilates or flexibility DVD - with long slow stretching that activates and balances the muscles - by somebody who is credentialed.  It will tone, too."
  4. "We tend to have better luck improving range of motion when hot, so warming up before you stretch is important.  Don't just thinking of stretching as the warm up!"

 

And, from me to you, for goodness sake, find some other way to keep up with the Kardashians.

View the original Self.com article here and download a pdf version here.

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