Be Safe: Always Stretch First!
As with other sports, it is incredibly important to warm up by stretching your body before working on your gymnastics. This video shows to do good Straddle Stretches to get your body ready for your gymnastic work-out.
Doing warm-up stretches helps to prepare your body and helps to prevent injuries. These stretches are good exercises for almost anyone, whether or not they are gymnasts.
If you really want to know how to maximize your stretching and to understand how to make your muscles work for total optimization, read this book:
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