If you are attempting to make improvements in your flexibility as well as range of motion, the muscles as well as the fascia needs to be the major focus for your flexibility training.
Fascia is a connective tissue that is fibrous and is present all over your entire body, not just the muscles. There are 3 main types of fascia:
- Superficial fascia – that mostly links with the skin;
- Deep fascia –mostly linked with the muscles, bones, blood vessels and nerves;
- Visceral (or subserous) fascia –mostly links to the internal organs
There are 3 main functions that muscle fascia provides:
- Fascia holds muscles together and it keeps the muscle in the correct place;
- Fascia keeps the muscles separated so they are able to work independently of others;
- Fascia offers a lubricated surface so that muscles are able to move smoothly against one another.
Now when you are inactive for long periods of time, due to injury or just being lazy, the muscle fascia begins to bind together. This will stop muscles from freely moving against each other and this leads to tightness or stiffness that will aid in keeping your muscles and their fascia in working order and stops your muscles and their fascia from seizing up. Regular stretching helps to keep muscles and the fascia in good working order.
Fascia stretching for flexibility is needed even if you feed as well as train your muscles properly, due to the fact that when fascia is too tight it restricts the growth of the muscle. When your goal is improving flexibility, the fascia and the muscles belonging to it should be the major focus of flexibility training.
You first need to learn how to stretch correctly and this will improve your flexibility and fitness fast so that you can become more limber, loose and pain free.