Vinluan: Importance of cooling down

Bobby Vinluan

EXERCISE process is always divided in to three, the warm-up, the exercise or training phase, and the cool-down phase. Cooling down exercises being the last in the process is equally important when exercising but is the easiest to omit. Generally however, cool-down exercise is warm-up in reverse.

Like horses in a hippodrome after vigorously racing are walked to cool down. It makes horse sense for people to do the same, because most often individuals dash out of their homes, do exercise and dash back again maybe straight to the refrigerator for a cold drink, not knowing that skipping cool-down exercises frequently results to injury.

This is because after exercise the muscles have to be stretched and relaxed after any exercise. It may be done by walking for at least five minutes, then follow it up by a slow, rhythmic stretching exercises and relaxation for the body to return in its natural pre exercise level.

Doing your cool-down exercises also insures the return of blood flow to the heart from the extremities that prevents muscle tightness. It is also essential to get your heart rate slowed and return to normal. Checking your heart rate after cooling down exercise is an important part of the whole exercise method.

Checking your heart rate before and after exercise gives you the hint after cooling down exercise if your heart rate is back to normal, where the pulse should be within 20 beats of the pre-exercise rate-approximately 100 or less beats. If your pulse rate is above this, continue a slow cooling off, this may be done by walking easily and relaxing.

So as you exercise following your program, keep in mind to keep at it, start with your warm-up and move slowly into the full program, make your exercise “sacred” and free from interference. Pick the best time of the day fit for you and stick to it.

Build slowly and do not rush, perform all exercises slowly and make the pattern and performance also relaxing. Vary your exercises and try new exercise routines. Take heart listening to your body, have the discipline and time to exercise.