When most people think about preventing injuries when working out, they think about warming up.
While a proper warmup is an essential part of every workout, you also need to make sure you’re cooling down after your workout. Why do you need to cool down?
Check out this guide to learn about the importance of a cool down.
1. Lower Your Heart Rate
The main reason you need to cool down after a workout is so you can return your heart rate to normal. When you exercise, your heart rate goes up and your heart pumps blood at a faster rate throughout your body.
This helps to supplement your muscles that are working harder during exercise. When you stop exercising, your heart rate begins to return to normal. But, if you stop your exercise too abruptly, it can lead to dizziness and injury.
By engaging in a cool down, your blood pressure will be able to gradually return to normal. You can talk to the sports medicine doctors at sportshealthnorthwest.com to learn about the right cooldown routine for your body.
2. Prevent Injuries
Just as warming up helps to prevent injuries, so too does cooling down. After working your muscles, you need to stretch them out while they’re still warm.
Doing so will allow you to elongate the muscle fibers that have been under strain during a workout. For example, if you go for a long run without properly cooling down and stretching after, then the recovery process will likely be longer and more painful. And, you won’t be able to reap as many benefits from your workout had you engaged in a proper cooldown.
3. Relax Your Mind
Exercise isn’t just good for your body, it’s also beneficial for your mind. Taking a few minutes to cool down after your workout can give you time to reflect on your accomplishments and fitness goals, and to spend some time thinking about how you’re feeling.
It can also give you time to think about the day ahead and set your goals for the day. We suggest setting your cool down to some relaxing music to help you get in the right mindset.
4. Muscle Recovery
Cooling down after a workout also allows your muscles to properly recover. After an intense bout of exercise, lactic acid builds up in your system.
A quick cool down can make it easier for the lactic acid to drain in your body. It also helps ensure that your body will be ready for the next grueling workout.
5. Alleviate Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness
Another great thing about cooling down after a workout is that it helps alleviate delayed onset muscle soreness. Delayed onset muscle soreness, also known as DOMS, occurs 24 to 48 hours after a workout.
During this time, the microtears in your muscle fibers cause soreness throughout the body. While some amount of delayed onset muscle soreness is to be expected, too much can be uncomfortable and can hinder your workout routine.
A good cooldown routine can help alleviate some of the delayed onset muscle soreness you’re about to experience.
Importance of a Cool Down: Are You Ready to Cool Down?
Now that you know about the importance of a cool down, it’s time to start incorporating a cooldown routine into your workout. Pretty soon, you’ll notice the difference in your body and your mind.
Be sure to check back in with our blog for more exercise-related tips and tricks.