Why do you feel dizzy when you stretch?
Stretching is good for you, or so they say. It’s supposed to loosen up those tight muscles and make you feel great. But sometimes stretching can have some unintended consequences like feeling dizzy or light-headed. What gives? Why does this happen? Well, never fear because I’m here to explain why that happens and what you can do about it.
What Is Stretching And Why Do We Do It?
Before we get into the nitty-gritty of why stretching makes us dizzy, let’s start with the basics: what is stretching anyway? Stretching involves moving your body in a way that lengthens your muscles temporarily – think of it as a physical warm-up before any activity. Whether we’re talking about static stretches, dynamic stretches, yoga poses or pilates moves, etc., they all share one key thing in common; they aim to help our bodies move through their full range-of-motion easily.
So why do we stretch? Simply put: multiple benefits come from having an active routine – including increased flexibility and blood flow throughout your body. In addition to promoting joint health by keeping things flexible!
What Happens To Our Body During A Stretch Routine?
When you stretch regularly you end up improving the flexibility of the muscle tissue gradually over time therefore reducing chances of injury but there are both physiological and biological processes happening behind the scenes within our body during each session as well:
- Increases blood flow
- Enhances oxygen uptake ability
- Helps regulation core temperature
- Neural signals sent around tell us how far we can safely twist ourselves
- Diminishes unwanted muscular tension
Fairly simple – right!
But now on to more dangerous territory…why do people often feel dizziness after prolonged periods of heavy breathing stretches such as holding Head stands (sirsasana) in yoga routines which I must admit takes skill/ability.
What Causes Dizziness During Stretching?
Dizziness when stretching is a common sensation many people experience. Most commonly, dizziness occurs because you may not be breathing correctly! That’s right something that seems simple like breathing can go awry if not done properly in accordance with your body’s threshold limits whilst ideally holding or depending on the type of stretch performed, thus leading to light-headedness and general unsteadiness during specific positions/movements.
Specifically when you are performing stretches where there is a lot of physical movement necessary it creates an effect whereby the muscle congestion leads to temporary blood flow blockages taking place causing oxygen supply problems for the cardiovascular system which manifests itself mainly via poor nerve contact; ultimately resulting in disruptions to communication between our muscles and nervous tissue (ie confusion).
Other reasons include:
- Over-exertion – This happens most typically from pushing yourself farther than your current capabilities
- Dehydration – By reducing water levels within our bodies can lead to reduced hydration status leaving our brain struggling!
- Hormonal Changes – Symptoms such as low blood sugar levels caused by hormonal imbalances referred to as hypoglycemia can wreak havoc without warning
- Medical Conditions – Pre-existing disorders like anemia or conditions like epilepsy which affect how different parts of the brain work together during exerted activities
Allergic Severe reactions including feeling lightheaded lasts longer than one minute should always involve medical intervention.
How Can We Prevent Dizziness When Stretching?
Prevention won’t necessarily work every single time since everyone’s physiology and capacity for stretches differs greatly but normally making several adjustments at once usually helps improve a situation:
- Warm-Up Correctly: Before any stretching try some basic warm-up exercises first, gradually building up each sequence over time so that both mind & body become prepared anywhere from 5mins -15mins early on.
- Hydrate: Being properly hydrated is essential going into and recovering from each round of stretches. To avoid situations like racing heartbeats, headaches, muscle cramps you must drink water before sessions enough fluids to match your body’s needs during the activity ahead.
- Slow Your Breathing Process: Try controlling breathing patterns so that they’re a bit slower than what we can naturally withstand in order to limit any increase in blood pressure!
- Dress For Success: Comfortable clothing is king! Loose-fitting garments are always better suited for movement/stretch activities since there’s no restriction on movement as opposed clothes with tighter fabric.
- Find Your Range Of Motion: Monitor your range-of-motion capabilities during each session eventually identifying limits you find most comfortable within their stretching practice e.g holding pigeon pose longer or finding new poses altogether.
Ultimately it’s all about listening carefully to our bodies rather than putting too much pressure & push beyond what we know ourselves capable of doing effectively.
Stretching shouldn’t make anyone feel dizzy or uneasy if done correctly thereby helping your body access its full potential but when it causes these unpleasant sensations then prevention strategies need be taken seriously by modifying basic habits which might not seem intuitive at first glance such as slowing down one’s breath rate or trying shorter sets should keep those occurrences under control mostly if common reasons such dehydration/hypoglycemia/ multiple prolonged epileptic attacks etc.should be checked out by professionals promptly and without hesitation!
Just pacing oneself accordingly will result in more successful stretching routines minus any negative outcomes making us healthier plus supporting energy/enhanced flexibility/reduced chances injury readiness while feeling invigorated afterwards!