There is more to flexibility than just being able to touch your toes, or sit comfortably in pigeon, it allows our bodies to functionally move through an increased range of motion during exercise and daily activities.
Without proper stretching your muscles contract and stiffen. The result of this is increased tension around the joints and decreased strength as your muscles are not able to function at their full potential without being able to lengthen; not to mention increased risk of injury.
Have you ever thought about how much more you could be working if you could just get a little deeper into that lunge? Think of how much strength you could be building if your mobility was not limiting you. The Pilates and Lagree methods are famous for strengthening, tightening, and toning long and lean muscles because of the emphasis that is placed on eccentric muscle loading (this means your muscles are working in the lengthened position). So in order to get the most out of your pilates and megaformer classes it is essential for your muscles to be capable of lengthening!
It's not a coincidence that we coin important components with the term "the backbone." Our spine is our central support system and houses the spinal cord and nerves which are essential for so many functions. The spinal cord is how your brain and body communicate so if it becomes injured things can't function properly or won't function at all. Good posture is a key component in improving spine health as it keeps your bones and joins in correct alignment, supports healthy nervous system functioning, and improves blood flow. Core strength and flexibility go hand in hand with correcting muscle imbalances through intentional movement in order to improve posture in Pilates and Lagree. A strong core is important for being able to hold yourself upright while flexible muscles allow your body to sit in correct alignment free of pain and tension while allowing for a better opportunity to effectively correct muscle imbalances.
Flexibility is such an important component of fitness that often times gets overlooked. If you neglect stretching, consider incorporating just 10 minutes after every workout. You don't have to spend an excessive amount of time stretching for your body to benefit from it!