Cooling Down - Often Overlooked but Vital

Even after we have finished a long swing dance session, workshop or Lindy Exchange, our bodies keep going. We often dance for hours on end and without proper care, it can take its toll on our bodies and well being. As Swing dancers we often develop problems in our hips, ankles and knees. For followers swivelling is a choice between style and knees-at-50. Leads can often develop shoulder and back problems from a lifetime of lifts. As much as we love to dance, particularly Swing and Lindy Hop, we must ensure we take proper care of ourselves so we can keep doing what we love. Slow Swing; Cool it Down In the same way a marathon runner will slow down and jog for 3-5 minutes before ending a training session, we as dancers should relax, put on a slow song, and enjoy the calm down. During this time, vary your movements, keep them slow and try to elongate your arms and legs to help with lactic acid reduction. Attempt Stretching Your muscles are most elastic directly after cardio as they have been used and are warm. Use this to your advantage to improve flexibility with some stretching. As Lindy Hop and Swing dacners, we must ensure flexibility in hip joints, hamstrings and shoulder joints. Swing dancing often calls for versatile jumps and lifts; the greater the flexibility the lower the risk of injury. Dynamic stretches such as striding or yoga postures will certainly help in bringing down your heart rate to normal and alleviate the stress from the exercise. Focus on any areas which may feel tight, particularly the legs, back and neck regions. A personal trainer can show you safe stretching practices. Injuries might not be reduced with stretching, however next-day discomfort in hamstrings, quads and calves are considerably reduced. Major muscles should be stretched for 15 to 60 seconds each with repetitions as much as 4 times. If you are pressed for time, perform a hamstring towel stretch instead in this method: •Rest on your back. •Raise one upper hand and loop a towel around your foot. •Bring the leg towards your chest by pulling on completions of the towel. •Feel the stretch in the hamstring and hold the position. •Change to the other leg and repeat. Apart from stretches there are other workouts that are light and can aid in cooling off. If you are not too comfy with stretching, try other approaches, however make sure to ask a fitness professional before attempting them on your own. Be Hydrated Fluids are necessary to keep you going throughout the day and each movement suggests you are losing a few of it. So after an energetic exercise, you have to make sure that the diminished water levels in your body are renewed appropriately so that strength and flexibility is preserved while discomfort in the muscles is reduced. During long swing dance session or during social nights at Lindy Exchanges, it is important to stay hydrated, especially if events are running over the course of a week or more. Opt for a Massage There is an argument about the efficiency of massages in assisting the cool down of the body- some research tasks have actually not discovered any evidence that massages after intense workouts can add to recuperation, whereas some research studies plainly show that recuperation increases as much as 50 % if the vital locations are massaged well. Many Swing Dancers have reported faster recovery times after a massage, so why not give it a shot. A foam roller can be a good replacement if you can't opt for a full body massage. Do not ignore the value of a cool off-- even if you are in a rush, keep 10 minutes aside for guaranteeing your muscles get ideal recuperation time. You should ask your personal trainer to suggest cool down techniques that would be apt for you. Foam rolling for swing dancers has particular benefits for the lower back and legs

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