Flexibility is one of the most important components of a balanced fitness program as it provides the ‘glue’ that holds that program together. Stretching is to the body what reading is to the mind! When a good stretching routine is incorporated into a balanced fitness program, it has many benefits which include:

  • Enhances/optimizes performance
  • Increases mental/physical relaxation
  • Promotes body awareness
  • Reduces the risk of injury
  • Reduces the risk of muscle soreness and tension

A balanced flexibility program includes both a warm up before exercise and a complete cool down after exercise to allow the heart rate to slow down and muscles to relax. Stretching is important to maintain the range of motion and may reduce the risk of repetitive trauma injuries. Continued flexibility should be a lifelong pursuit if you wish to maintain a continued range of motion, and avoid injuries and other related problems. The use of Yoga and Pilates encourage flexibility and range of motion.

Too little and too much stretching are also thought to increase the risk for injury. Stretching is encouraged most days of the week and should be done only once the muscles are warmed up. Stretching should never be painful; however you can stretch to the point of mild discomfort. Hold each stretch for at least 20 seconds while practicing good breathing.




button What is Fitness
button Getting Started
button Essential Components
button Aerobic Fitness
button Muscle Strength
button Core Training
button Flexibility
button Common Injuries
button Mental Fitness/ Preparation
button Firefighter Nutrition
button Wildland Fitness Assessment Battery
button Home Grown Fitness
button Q & A
button Resources
button Appendices
button BLM Fire and Aviation Fitness Challenge
button FireFit Task Group