Stretch Routines explains the science of stretching, why it is necessary and how to fit it into your daily routine so that your lifestyle change is gradual and sustainable. Over 50 stretches of varying degrees of difficulty are illustrated with step-by-step photographs and advice on how to make the stretch most effective. Each section is preceded by warm-up exercises. The shortening of specific muscles as a result of certain activities, lifestyles and sports, and the health problems that can result from such imbalances, are explained and routines suggested to alleviate or prevent this. Taylor-made stretch routines are suggested for specific sports, concentrating on those muscles that are strengthened, and therefore shortened, at the expense of opposing muscle groups. The book also describes a gentle approach to lifestyle changes that need to be made to achieve optimal health.