We all know you shouldn't stretch cold, but for how long after a moderate workout does your warm-up last?

Can you have good stretches more than a few hours after exercise (without having to warm up to do the stretches again?).

3 Answers 3


It's best to stretch immediately after exercise. When you work out, your muscles are contracting and shortening. Stretching will help lengthen your muscles again, and your muscles will be warmest immediately after your workout. If you wait, your muscles may become stiff. Waiting a couple of minutes (while you cool down for example) is fine, but if you wait a few hours you'll need to warm up again, and you probably still won't get as deep a stretch as you would have after a full workout.


I aim to be sweating significantly after my warm up. You can do this in 5 minutes with somewhat high intensity movement.


The link you just posted has the answer:

Before you begin stretching your muscles, perform light aerobic activity for five to 10 minutes.

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