I’m a big fan of the app developer lolo, and their numerous lolofit exercise-related apps. It was their Beatburn Treadmill/Outdoor Trainer app that kept me interested in running after I migrated from the couch to a regular 5K runner. When I received an email advertisement of their newest app, Performance Stretching, I was eager to give it a try.
Like its predecessors of Easy Arms, Easy Legs, Killer Butt, and Easy Abs, Performance Stretching is a video-based instructional app. Select your fitness level, one of the workouts for the results you’re after from the list of 11 workouts, hit “Start” and begin.
Features include over 150 stretches for static, dynamic, and foam roller stretches (for releasing fluid during a cool down); use your own music during a workout; audio descriptions to accompany the video; and more.
So why consider an app dedicated to stretching? Here’s lolo’s answer:
Most people learned back in elementary school that they should do static stretching (where you hold a stretch for a few minutes) before running or engaging in sports to prevent injury. It turns out that static stretching before a workout not only decreases athletic performance, it can actually increase the risk of injury.
The right way to get ready for an intense workout is dynamic stretching: This active form of stretching moves your muscles through the full range of motion to increase your blood flow, reduce tightness, deliver important nutrients to muscles, and improve your athletic performance. Performance Stretching will show you the most effective type of warm up for running and nearly every type of sport. Add it before any activity and you will be amazed by how much your performance improves.
Since I’ve reached the age of frequent body stiffness, I decided to try the “Lower Back Stretch” for a couple of days, as well as the “Running Warm Up” workout before a 5K run. The Lower Back workouts were about 6 minutes long and had about 7 different stretches, while the Running workout was a little more than 4 minutes.
Both workouts were flawless in their delivery and the familiar female voice (from the other lolo apps) was comforting. As expected, the app is fairly intuitive although selecting a new workout is done through the “Profile” tab and not the Back button as expected. It’s also not very clear that you’ve selected a different workout since there is not identifying descriptor other than “Workout Preview” in the top menu bar. Additionally, it’s disconcerting to see the alert box “No workout running” when changing between different workouts.
Nevertheless if you find yourself wanting to reeducate yourself about the benefits of dynamic stretching, you can trust lolo in building your confidence and health.