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If you experience intermittent neck pain and/or stiffness, you may benefit from a simple routine of stretching and strengthening the dozens of skeletal muscles and ligaments that line your neck.
The most important requirement for healthy ligaments and muscles is steady blood flow to these tissues. And stretching the ligaments and muscles that line your neck is the most effective way to promote and maintain a rich supply of blood in this region. Read more about Simple Exercises to Promote Healthy Neck Muscles and Ligaments
If you have tight hip flexors, you can expect to have problems with your hip joints and lower back, if not now, then almost certainly at some point in the future.
Your hip flexors are a group of muscles that enable you to bring your knee up towards your trunk. Though several muscles contribute to this action, the two primary players are your iliacus and psoas major, which come together to form the extremely strong ilipsoas tendon, which attaches your hip flexor muscles to your thigh bone. Read more about How to Keep Your Hip Flexors Healthy
Most of the problems that you can experience in your lower legs are likely to originate from posterior compartment muscles, the two main ones being your gastrocnemius and soleus. Together, these calf muscles allow you to push off the ground with every step you take. Read more about Overlooked Causes of Leg Pain
In this third installment of exercises for healthy shoulders, I'll take you through a few simple stretches and one foam rolling exercise that can help keep all of the major tendons and ligaments that surround your shoulder joints functional and well perfused with healthy blood flow. These exercises are excellent for preventing and addressing common shoulder problems like impingement and adhesive capsulitis (frozen shoulder). Read more about More Exercises for Healthy Shoulders - Part Three
Clearly, it's best to stretch all of your major muscles. Stretching promotes healthy blood flow and fluid exchange, which keep your muscles well nourished and relatively free of buildup of waste products, which lead to optimal function and lower risk of injury. Read more about Why You Should Stretch Your Hamstrings
To review, ligaments and muscles go from one bone to another. The main difference is that ligaments stabilize joints, while muscles allow you to move them.
Your spine is made up of 24 bones that together, form your vertebral column, the protective housing for your nervous system. Read more about Stretches to Keep Your Spine Healthy
In case you haven't noticed, I'm a huge fan of foam rolling. Once you get the hang of it, foam rolling can be like getting deep tissue work from a skilled health practitioner, only you can experience it at anytime, and you can linger for as long as you want on areas that need extra attention. Read more about How to Stretch Your Lumbar and Thoracic Spinal Regions
Like your hip, your shoulder joint is a classic ball and socket joint that affords great flexibility. But with great range of motion comes greater potential for injury. Makes perfect sense, right? With a wide range of motion, the soft tissues that surround your shoulder joint are more likely to experience strains and even small tears than the ligaments and muscles that surround less mobile joints like those in your elbow and fingers. Read more about Simple Exercises to Keep Your Shoulders Healthy - Part One