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There are very few of us who can claim to have never had any form of muscle cramps at all. While some of you may argue that this is not the most painful feeling in the world, the fact is that there is indeed some amount of pain associated with the same.
What makes matters worse is the fact that there is a feeling of helplessness that one experiences during cramps. Indeed, all this and more is enough to justify the fact that no one really wants to suffer from cramps.
Unlike most medical ailments, the prevention of cramps does not lie in a healthy diet. It results in basic fitness and the level of physical activity that you engage in. This is because muscle cramps are mainly caused due to an imbalance in the muscle groups.
This happens when a particular group of muscles are stronger than the others. As a result, you generally end up experiencing muscle cramps in the same muscle group over and over again. That is why the best way to tackle this would be by working on the muscles in such a manner that the weaker muscles become as strong as the other ones.
This article talks about 5 different ways in which you can walk towards fitness and do your stretches in order to keep muscle cramps at bay:
1. Hamstring stretches
2. Hamstring standing stretches
3. Lunge stretches
4. Standing calf stretch
5. 90/90 stretch
1. Hamstring Stretches
This is one of those stretches that is really easy to pull off and does not really take much of your time. All that you have to do is sit straight with both your legs extended. It is good if you can find a firm bed for the same. Alternatively, you can also choose to sit on the floor.
Making sure that your back is straight, you can go ahead and bend at the hips. Following this, all you have to do is stretch forward and grasp your toes.
In the initial days if you find that difficult, you can start off with your calves and gradually go up to your toes. This type of stretching is also known as seated calf stretching and is one of the most efficient ways to prevent muscle cramps.
2. Hamstring Standing Stretches
This is similar to the previous stretch but you will need a few props here. Start off with a chair and place it against a wall. In the absence of a chair you may use a bed or anything of that likes. Then stand in front of it and place your right heel on it.
This is done in order to ensure that your leg is straight. Keep your upper body straight and ensuring that your left heel is at the floor, bend your body at the hips. Repeat this alternatively for both the legs in a continuous exercise of 10-15 stretches.
3. Lunge Stretches
Here you need to start off by standing absolutely straight with your feet together. You can then take a big step forward. Make sure that your legs are as further apart as possible. You can then bend either of your knees and drop into a lunge. The other leg is kept absolutely straight and the toes are firmly placed on the ground.
For your upper body, place either of your hands on the ground and then sway your body towards the other side while making sure that the arm of that side stretches itself towards the ceiling. While opting for this stretch make sure that you do it for at least 10 times at a go, shifting sides alternatively.
4. Standing Calf Stretch
Face a wall and place your palms on it. While doing so, make sure that your arms are as stretched as possible. Now bend your knee and place your right leg forward. At this point your left leg should be stretched backwards and it must be ensured that the same is absolutely straight.
You must then lean forward by flexing your right knee and engage in a motion that is similar to that of pushing a wall. Remain in that position for 30 to 40 seconds after which you can get back to the standing straight posture again. Repeat the activity for 3 to 5 times on either end at least 4 to 5 days a week.
5. 90/90 Stretch
This type of stretch has a lot to do with perpendicularity. One needs to position themselves such that the right knee is bent at 90 degrees and the calf muscles are perpendicular to the body. The left leg is made to rest on the floor while the right foot is flexed. As is obvious in this posture, the left knee is moved towards the left of the body and then made to bend in such a fashion that the foot faces behind you.
Both the left and the right feet are kept flexed at this point. Once you are comfortable in that position, the right butt cheek is placed on the floor. The closer you can move the cheek towards the floor, the better it is for you.
However, understand here that it may not be possible for you to get it extremely close if your body structure is super tight. In such a case, try to get it as close as possible (and be assured that with regular practice you will get better at it). While doing this stretch make sure that you hold the position for 30 seconds to 3 minutes after which you can repeat it on the other side.