Cool down exercises are equally important as the warm up ones. You must be wondering, “WHAT’S SO SPECIAL IN A COOL DOWN? AND WHY SHOULD I WASTE MY TIME DOING IT?”
Here’s why you any Table Tennis player or any sports person for that matter should do a cool down after practice or workout
Let me ask you a question. Would you like a vehicle to stop hastily by applying sudden brakes or would you prefer to stop it smoothly? I am assuming that you would like smooth landings. Sudden brakes would spoil the mechanism of the car and reduce the life of it’s engine and other parts of the car. Our body is also similar to a car. After doing a heated practice session, if you pack up without doing a cool down, then you are risking a threat of potential injuries. Have you ever noticed a pull in your back or leg muscles the next day and wonder what went wrong yesterday? Ask yourself this question, “Did I do a cool down?” If it’s no. It’s high time you should start doing it.
Now let’s know the scientific reason for the WHY of cooling down. Cooling down after your workout allows for a gradual recovery of pre exercise heart rate and blood pressure. Cooling down may be most important for competitive Table Tennis athletes, competing at a district, state, national or an international level because it helps regulate blood flow. Cooling down doesn't appear to help reduce muscle stiffness and soreness after exercise, but more research is needed.
So without further delay, let’s see some effective cool down exercises. It is recommended to have a YOGA MAT for cool down which is readily available at any Decathlon store. You may have a look by clicking on the link below:
#Opinion: Perform all the cool down exercises in a seated state. That helps your body relax better.
Seated Hamstring Stretch
This exercise will relax your hamstrings and back. First do it for the left leg, making sure your knees are straight. Then repeat for the right leg. Watch the video below for correct form:
This famous exercise is a great reliever for your thighs, lower back and your arms at the same time. It’s a must do after any game. Here’s the video below for correct form
This exercise is used for strengthening and cooling down as well. It will work on your 3 body parts I.e. for chest, abdomen and lower back. Based on your palm position on the ground, it shall activate the respective muscle. Here’s the video below to help you do it the right way:
This exercise will help you free your hips and also the side glute muscles after you are done playing Table Tennis. It is also known to stretch the piriformis muscle. Now, what’s that? The piriformis muscle is a flat, band-like muscle located in the buttocks near the top of the hip joint. This muscle is important in lower body movement because it stabilizes the hip joint and lifts and rotates the thigh away from the body. Where’s the piriformis muscle? Here’s the image below.
Coming back to the pigeon pose, let’s look at the video below on how to do this pose correctly:
I hope this article has given you the right sense on why cooling down is as important as warming up for Table Tennis. Also, there is a wide ocean of cool down exercises. I have only taken the one which I have been doing after my intense Table Tennis sessions.
Nevertheless, believe it or not! Cooling down will improve your recovery after the game in a much better manner. Also, it will help you give a better night's sleep (if you are practicing in the evening).
Until then, keep playing and keep spreading happiness through Table Tennis.
Table Tennis, also known as chess at a lightning speed which was introduced in the year 1900 must have had your attention and you would have tried this addictive sport with no plan to leave the racket anytime soon OR you are fairly new to this sport and interested in knowing the rules of Table Tennis.
Table tennis debuted at the 1988 Summer Olympics in Seoul, just eight years after China hosted its first World Cup, and has since become a regular event at the Games. Here are some details on the table tennis rules, regulations, equipment, and playing style.