Flexibility is the most important component of fitness. Yet, it is the most neglected. Stretching is now your new best friend.
My yoga practice began as a form of torture. My hips, hamstrings and back were weak and tight from nearly 20 years of playing sports and a decade of lifting weights without stretching. I was immobile and injury-prone. A few years ago, I realized why I stuck with yoga through the discomfort: I was benefiting from increasing my flexibility.
As an athlete, I frequently had heard that if I could not touch my toes, I was not reaching my highest athletic ability. I knew this was true, but I did not know to what extent.