Everything you know about stretching is probably incorrect.

Mounting evidence over the years has shown that static stretching before any sort of working out, but especially before running, can actually increase the likelihood of an injury. On average, runners who static stretch can actually reduce their running performance by about 3.7 percent.

Meanwhile, dynamic stretching (that's stretching that involves active movements that help joints and muscles go through a full range of motion) actually increased performance significantly. While studies still vary on those numbers, evidence points towards dynamic stretching as the preferred form of stretching for runners. For those of you new to this routine, here are some great dynamic stretches you can implement into your workouts.

Side Lunges

Side Lunges

Side Lunges

Put both feet forward a little wider than shoulder-width apart. With bent knees, lean all the way to right, then all the way to the left, keeping both feet planted on the ground. Make sure to keep your chest lifted and your back straight. Repeat for 30 seconds, and then switch sides to stretch both sides.

Straight Leg Lateral Swing

Straight Leg Lateral Swing

Straight Leg Lateral Swing

Turn and face a wall and place your hands on the wall for support. Keep your right leg straight, and shift the weight to your left leg. When in a sturdy position, swing your right leg in front of your body and out across your right side. Do 12 reps for each side.

Bent Knee-Forward Swing

Bent Knee-Forward Swing

Bent Knee-Forward Swing

Turn and face a wall and once again place both hands on the wall for support. Shift the weight to your left leg and bend the right knee until its around 90 degrees. Bring it up towards your chest, then stick it out behind you until it's completely straight. Make sure to hit 12 reps, then once again switch legs.

Leg Swings

Leg Swings

Leg Swings

Reach your left hand out and grab on to something to keep stable. Put the weight on your left leg and swing your right leg up in front of your face and directly behind you. Continue the swinging motion in a fluid manner for at least 10 reps. Switch legs and hit the other side for 10 more reps.

Donkey Kicks

Donkey Kicks

Donkey Kicks

While on your hands and knees, use your hamstring and glutes area to pull back your left leg. Make sure to keep your back straight, and keep your left leg bent as you bring it up. The goal is to get both your hamstring and your back in a straight line. Hit for 10 reps and then switch to the other leg.

Fire Hydrants

Fire Hydrants

Fire Hydrants

Again get on your hands and knees and keep your back flat. Then, lift your knee out until its perpendicular to the ground. Slowly bring your leg back down, and repeat for 10 reps. The stretch is called Fire Hydrants because of how dog's pee on a fire hydrant, if that image helps you in any way.

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