In my opinion, stretching is a really important activity, which worth to do. If you want to increase your flexibility, to relax, to feel better in general, this is exactly, for you.
There are more reasons, why we should do it before and after workout.
Flexibility is a youth. As more we flexible as better we feel. Stretching helps to solve many issues, such as back problems, if you feel tired or depressed it will make you relaxed and happier.
It improves blood circulation to out entire body, especially the muscles being used while exercising. Another fact, it improves and increases our range of motion, especially to our joints; it gives us better balance as our range of motion becomes greater.
Sometimes we sit in not comfortable positions or we work hard, lift heavy things, so we need to relax our body in order get rid of tiredness,pain in muscles or some discomfort. It helps to clean our mind too.
Of course, we should be careful with exercises. If we make something wrong, like stretch to fast or feel some strong pain in some point and decide it is not enough, it can cause an injury. Overstretch is not a good choice. Need to do it slowly and to be patient in order to see great results at the end.
How fast we can stretch our muscles and joints? It depends on you only and type of your body structure. You should know that 5 % of people has a limit, not everybody can sit on split. The reason is structure of hip bones. But do not worry, it is still great result.
Some people stretch their muscles very fast, they can achieve their maximum already, in a month, others can stretch couple of years and still not to reach their maximum. but does not mean, they will never do)
From my experience, I have slow results, 5 months and still not perfect. Very important not to be in a hurry and pay attention to your body, it tells us when we need to stop for a while. It is good to have training 3 times per week, muscles can adjust presser and relax more,after you become more and more stretchy.
Need to hold back straight, not to bend legs, find your own way to exercise before you do any kind split. I usually do slow wiggles, it helps me, some people feel they need another things.
You have to understand that the last 10 sm can be the most difficult and more painful. Some people can stretch without any help, some need help of trainer.
Find a trainer who understands you very good, it is important. I am pretty happy about mine.
So, don`t forget! Don`t be in a hurry and you gonna feel younger,confident.