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Exercise for your rest days

We all know waking up feeling stiff and sore after a hard workout the previous day.

While feeling sore after a workout is a sign of doing well, we can agree that it’s best to avoid moving around a stiff and sore body for several days after a workout.

Fortunately, active recovery exercises are more effective at killing delayed-onset muscle soreness (DOMS) than simply taking a painkiller and waiting for it to pass.[1] They are accessible to both beginners and more advanced players.

Keep reading to learn more about what active recovery is, how it compares to passive recovery, and some exercise tips to help you get started:

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What is Active Recovery?

Active recovery involves specific exercises that are performed either during, directly after, or in the days following your workout to speed up muscle recovery.

The exercises you do on your active recovery days are often the same as those you do during regular exercise, with cycling and jogging being two popular options.

The main difference is that they are usually between 30-60% of your MHR, also known as your maximum heart rate. Your maximum heart rate will vary depending on your age and can be calculated by subtracting your age from 220.

Exercising in the low range of your MHR will increase your heart rate so your blood can pump without putting extra stress on your muscles.

Nice to know:

Many of us believe that the buildup of lactic acid in our muscles is the cause of DOMS (delayed muscle soreness), which is why you feel that stiff and sore feeling in the days after your workout. Is. Surprisingly, DOMS is actually the result of eccentric exercise, which is microscopic tears in our muscles when we exercise. Using active recovery days can ensure that we give our bodies the time they need to recover after exercise and we Adverse effects of overtraining.

Difference between active and passive recovery

Active and passive recovery are two different processes that differ in many ways. But the ultimate goal is the same – to keep the body strong and healthy.

  • To do a Exercise for the rest of the day A great option for those days when you feel like you still have energy but are dealing with some residual pain or stiffness.
  • Inactive rest days When you’re recovering from an injury or feeling under the weather.

Active recovery

Active recovery refers to the use of gentle, non-strenuous movements to speed up the muscle recovery process that occurs after high-intensity physical activity.

Examples of active rehabilitation exercises:

  • Jogging lightly between sets of sprinting exercises.
  • Yin yoga, which involves passive long-held poses in the days following a strength-training workout.

Passive recovery

Passive recovery is a type of recovery that occurs through rest and silence. Although it is not as effective as active recovery, passive recovery days are something we all need to take.

Examples of passive recovery:

Benefits of active rehabilitation

It’s not always easy to know. When to take a rest day?and while it may seem like hitting the gym seven days a week is the fastest way to build the body of your dreams, recovery is an important part of any training plan.

During your recovery days, eating foods that support muscle recovery and penciling in an active recovery workout will help you build up to workouts faster and experience benefits such as:

  • Decreased lactic acid build-up
  • Increase muscle strength
  • Improved sports performance
  • Reduced DOMS recovery time.
  • Daily physical activity that reduces the risk of injury.

Most professional athletes spend significantly more time rehabilitating than training.[2] And learning the best way to speed up the recovery process is an essential part of maximizing the benefits of consistent training.

Types of functional rehabilitation exercises

Many popular exercises can be turned into an active rehabilitation exercise by adjusting the intensity level.

One can do things like cycling and jogging at minimal intensity to benefit muscle recovery as opposed to muscle growth.


Using yoga for sports recovery can allow muscles and their surrounding connective tissue to loosen and lengthen.

This creates more space for oxygenated blood that contains many of the nutrients needed for the recovery process to reach the tissue, helping the muscles in their recovery process.

Here are some poses to include in your rest day workout:

Downward Dog Stretch

Learn how to do the downward dog stretch:


Spinal twist stretch

Learn how to bend the spine:



Learn how to bridge:

From knee to chest

Learn how to do the Knee to Chest:


Kneeling hip flexor stretch

Learn how to do the kneeling hip flexor stretch:


Includes all these poses and more. ‘Active Recovery and Core’ workout which can be found on the Adidas Training app..


Cycling, being a low-impact exercise, is a great addition to any recovery workout and can help get your blood pumping while putting minimal stress on muscles as well as bones and joints. Is.

For cycling to be a recovery exercise, it should be done for no more than an hour—significantly short for anyone new to exercise—and at no time should you exceed 60% of your MHR. .

You should aim to cycle at a conversational pace, no higher than a two on the difficulty scale, and be able to breathe comfortably through your nose at all times.

Stroll or walk

Whether you choose to jog or walk during your rest day’s active workout will depend on your fitness level and the intensity you need to get your heart rate up.

For a truly active recovery workout, you can try a 30-40 minute low-intensity walk, which will give you all the essential recovery benefits with minimal stress.

to massage

For anyone who wants to limit their movement, massage is a great option. It can either be self-administered using your hands, a foam roller, or even a tennis ball, or it can be done professionally by a registered massage therapist.

Massage can help ease tightness, improve blood flow, and even relieve any lingering muscle pain.

The bottom line

Active recovery is best used on days when you have the energy to exercise but are physically limited by muscle soreness and fatigue.

Whether you decide to walk, cycle or do yoga, you can trust that increased blood flow will help relieve DOMS and give your muscles everything they need. They need to be repaired, you Speed ​​up recovery And get back to your regularly scheduled workouts faster.