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What Are Stretch Studios And Are They Worth Going To?

May 29, 2019

With fitness classes popping up left and right, there seems to be a workout for every kind of person — from spin-loving fanatics and pilates gurus to yoga lovers and HIIT treadmill runners. On the flip side, there are also tons of wellness and restorative classes on the market, including meditation classes, sleep yoga, and practices like tai chi.

So, it’s not surprising that yet another fitness trend has hit the studio streets: stretch studios. We’re going to investigate what these classes really are and if they’re worth your time and money.

 

Why Even Stretch?

Stretching is chock-full of benefits for both your body and your mind. Stretching daily has been shown to increase flexibility, decrease tension, relax the mind, and improve posture! Stretching may also lower the risk of fitness-related injury. All in all, stretching allows muscles to be well circulated and ultimately healthier.

Even though stretching has numerous benefits, some statistics reveal that over 80 percent of Americans aren’t getting enough exercise — and this includes static (long hold) stretching and dynamic (move through a range of motion) stretching.

There are lots of us who work out regularly but skip the stretching, which could cause damage to the body and increase the risk of injury. Even just 20 minutes of stretching — a week! — could counteract damage we do to our bodies through all the repetitive pounding, flexing, and strengthening.

It goes without saying that stretching should be an irreplaceable part of any fitness routine. Could stretch studios be the gap we’re all looking to fill?

 

The 411 On Stretch Studios

The main goal of group stretch classes is to teach people proper stretching techniques that best benefit the body. Depending on the exact studio, you might get to choose between a foam rolling class, a stretch class based on yoga poses, or an endurance class that focuses on parts of the body that get particularly tight from running or cycling long distances. Other studios might offer general classes that journey through each muscle group, showcasing both static and dynamic stretches.

These group classes tend to range from 25 minutes long to even 60 minutes or longer, with an average price around $20 per drop in. If you’re looking for some individualized love, oftentimes you can book private sessions, which could start costing over $100 per private class.

 

So, Is a Stretch Class Worth It?

Everyone’s body is different, so it’s hard to make any broad recommendations. However, if you know that a solid amount of stretching keeps your body healthy, you have the means to pay for it, and you know you’re not motivated to stretch on your own, a class could be worth checking out.

 

Here are some other reasons a stretch studio could work for you:

You’re devoted to fitness

Stretching and other recovery classes may be a good choice for devoted exercisers who have a hard time penciling in rest days and solo stretch sessions. It’s easy to schedule the time to push your body, but might be hard to carve out time to really allow your muscles to properly recover.

 

You want to learn how to stretch — properly

Who’s to say you can’t take what you learn in a stretch studio and begin replicating it at home? If you’re hoping to learn new techniques while better understanding your body and the various muscle groups, consider going to a few classes to gain more knowledge on stretching and how it can become a normal part of your fitness regime.

 

You thrive off of group motivation

Sometimes it’s hard to stay accountable to fitness and health goals when you’re going at it alone. If you know you’re someone who needs to be pushed in a group setting (yes, even if this means sitting and doing hamstring stretches) you might benefit from a stretch studio.

 

What to Watch Out For:

Make sure you’re not doubling up

Take a good look at your typical workout regime; there’s a good chance you’re already incorporating some of what you’d do in a typical stretch class. For example, if you regularly practice yoga or foam roll before or after a run, you might be already getting most of the benefits offered at a stretch studio.

 

Start slowly

If you do check out a stretch studio, remember that group classes tend to push people a little bit harder than what we might be ready for. Don’t push yourself too deep into a stretch for the sake of looking exactly like the person to your right or left, or hold a specific pose that hurts just because the instructor said to. If you feel uncomfortable in any position, let the instructor know right away.

So is a stretch studio worth it? Maybe. Take a good look at your current workout regime and weigh the pros and cons yourself. Stretching can be a great tool to have in your fitness toolkit; whether or not you do that solo or in a class setting is entirely up to you.

 

 

 

 

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