34 Dangerous Health Lies and Fitness Myths from Exercise Trainers People Still Believe

3 “The more limber you are, the better.”

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Even when trainers tell you not to force things, there’s an implicit message that your eventual goal is a greater stretch. If you can touch your knees now, you should be aiming for the floor. If you can touch the floor today, work toward hugging your chest to your knees. But achieving those goals may offer nothing more than bragging rights. “Flexibility is certainly important, and you should be flexible enough to do the things you need or want to do without being uncomfortable,” says Jo A. Hannafin, MD, PhD, orthopedic director of the Women’s Sports Medicine Center at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York City. cool stuff for guys cool stuff to buy cool stuff for kids cool stuff to make

“But there is no health benefit in having a hyperflexible body or being able to twist yourself into a pretzel just for the sake of doing so.” In fact, pushing your body into extreme stretches can cause injury. People with tremendously lax joints may be at greater risk for hurting themselves because their ligaments can’t effectively keep their joints in position, explains Polly de Mille, an exercise physiologist who works with Dr. Hannafin. cool stuff for guys cool stuff to buy cool stuff for kids cool stuff to make

3 “A cool-down after your workout minimizes muscle soreness.”

For years researchers believed that lactic acid buildup during rigorous exercise was what caused our muscles to ache later. Their solution: a few minutes of walking or stretching to help disperse the lactate to other parts of the body. It’s a concept that’s alive and well today, despite the fact that reams of research have proved that lactate buildup has little to do with postexercise muscle soreness.cool stuff for guys cool stuff to buy cool stuff for kids cool stuff to make

“There is some evidence that after intense exercise, a cool-down can help prevent blood from pooling in a person’s extremities and reduce their risk of becoming dizzy or passing out,” says Carl Foster, PhD, professor of exercise and sport science at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse. “I would recommend doing it after any class to allow people to get their heart rates down.” But don’t sweat it if you have to cut out of your session early. “After a moderate workout, walking to the locker room will provide all the cool-down a healthy person needs,” Foster says. cool stuff for guys cool stuff to buy cool stuff for kids cool stuff to make

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