For athletes like swimmers, the triceps stretch is an essential part of their flexibility program. When swimming, lifting weights, or throwing, the muscles in the upper arms do a lot of work, so performing the triceps stretch regularly is important in avoiding injury.
Even for those for whom the arms are used little, such as outfield footballers, it is still important to improve flexibility in all the main areas of the body in order to avoid any unevenness in levels of flexibility.
The triceps muscle stretch is performed standing up, as follows:
- Lift one arm overhead, with the bicep resting against the back of the head, the arm bent and the hand resting on the rear of the opposite shoulder.
- Grasp the elbow with other hand.
- Gently pull the arm back, behind the head and towards the floor.
- Hold for 30 seconds.
- Relax and repeat.
- Do this twice for each arm.
You should feel this in the lats and the back of the upper arm.
You will often see swimmers doing this before and during a long workout - it's also popular with body builders, climbers, and most athletes who throw a ball.