Fit Farmer, Ep 16: The benefits of stretching

(Photo by Adrian Clark, Flickr, CC BY-ND 2.0)

This Fit Farmer topic can be likened to when a parent tells their child to eat their vegetables, or how a person knows they should floss their teeth, but never do it.

On this episode of the Fit Farmer podcast, hosts Shaun Haney and Gary Chambers talk about stretching and the associated benefits, and why plenty of people still skip this step in their routine.

“I think it’s really critically important for farmers in general because we have a job now that requires sort of full-on, and then a lot of sitting,” says Chambers.

Stretching increases range of motion, improves physical performance, reduces the risk of injury, and increases blood flow to the muscles, says Chambers, adding that hip flexors, the lower back, shoulders, and trap (neck) muscles carry a lot of tension from being in a static position most of the time.

A huge benefit that comes from stretching is the relief of stress and an increase in mental clarity, which Chambers says will benefit decision-making around the farm.

“Until you need it, there’s no real measurable benefit in your life,” says Chambers, which is why most people avoid stretching, even before or after a regular workout.

However, not all stretches are created equal and it the science of stretching has evolved over the years. Chambers explains that stretching to the point of tension, and holding for 15 to 60 seconds, and done gently, allows muscle tissue to reset.

Hear the full conversation for a true/false Q & A with Chambers, plus tips on how to fit stretching in:

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