For many people, exercising is about more than getting six-pack abs or training for a marathon. It’s about self-care and carving out some “me” time in an overly-connected world.
While it’s fantastic to have such a positive relationship with working out, this mindset may get you into the habit of skipping too many rest days. To repair itself properly, your body needs adequate rest but don’t worry – rest days don’t have to be full of lazing around the couch (although, we’re not here to judge!)
So, if you can’t stand being sedentary for too long but you’re still aware of the importance of rest days, here are our top three active recovery workouts you can do instead.
Using a foam roller or tennis ball, self-myofascial massage helps relieve tension from the myofascial tissue, or the connective tissue between your bones and muscles. Most of us can’t afford a weekly deep tissue massage so foam rolling is the ultimate alternative.
Some experts claim that self-myofascial massage helps prevent soreness while others say it can increase your range of motion. But mostly, it just feels amazing on aching muscles.
Keep in mind, there are specific ways to do self-myofascial massage so make sure to talk to a physiotherapist or trainer at your gym for tips on how to do it safely and effectively!
Many people who have a regular exercise routine find that they often skip stretching. You’d be surprised at how much your flexibility and range of motion improves once you start stretching more regularly. It really takes your workouts to the next level and some people report less soreness when they stretch regularly, too.
The two major categories of stretching are static stretching and dynamic stretching. Dynamic stretches are best performed before a workout as they’re characterized by moving through the stretches. They not only warm up your muscles but aid in expanding them as well to get you ready to exercise.
Static stretching is characterized by holding a stretched position to slowly achieve more length in your muscles. These are best performed after a workout while your muscles are still warm to avoid any pain or potential injury.
Check out some of our cool-down stretches on the OOMPH app which are available after every workout.
If you like martial arts, which you probably do if you’re into kickboxing, you’ll love tai chi as an active recovery workout. It’s low-impact and perfect for increasing balance and body awareness.
Tai chi activates the parasympathetic nervous system with its signature slow-moving, flowing movements that help our bodies relax and de-stress. Like yoga, it’s one of those mind-body connection workouts making it perfect to do in between kickboxing days.
Overall, there are a plethora of ways to do active recovery on your rest days. Walking around your neighbourhood with a friend or going for a swim in the ocean are other great ways to stay active while allowing your body to recover.
At OOMPH, we suggest using the app with a healthy dose of active recovery days between your high-intensity kickboxing workouts. Try OOMPH today with a 7-day free trial!