Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Do these stretches NOW!

We spend a lot of time hunched over.  All of us.  Those that work at a desk for 8 hours.  Those that are with kiddos all day (think playing Legos or preparing lunch).  Those that drive any amount of time at all.  And any of you that text, type, read and watch on any sort of phone, tablet or computer.  So today I am sharing two of my favorite stretches.  I often tell my students that if everyone in the world did these every day there would be a lot less problems in the world!  And I believe it.  One stretch will open your chest to relieve tension and stress along with helping you to breather properly.  The other will open and stretch the hips, releasing tension in the low back and allowing you to relax your head and neck, or, more appropriately, allow Atlas to let go of the world for a few moments.

Do these stretches at work.  At home.  Once a day, three times a day.  Whatever you can manage.  I promise, you will feel better!

Fig. 1
Fig. 2

 Prayer Hands
Sit on the edge of your chair to engage the core.
Relax you shoulders down, keeping your gaze forward.
Let your arms relax at your side, then bring the palms together behind the back, with pinkies along the spine.  (Fig. 1)
If bringing the hands together is difficult, stack the hands. (Fig. 2)
Keep the shoulders relaxed down, do not let them hunch up.
Lift your ribs away from the hips.
Take deep breaths, with each exhale imagine your head lengthening away from your shoulders.
3-5 deep breaths.

Number 4 Stretch
Sit at the edge of your chair.
Cross one leg over the other, nice and wide, like a number 4.
Place your hands on the crosse leg, allowing the arms to relax.
As you exhale bend forward lowering your chest toward your legs.  Bend as far forward as you can, gently pressing the leg to stay flat.  You will feel this stretch through the glute (booty!) on the side of the bent leg as well as in the lower back.
Let your head relax completely.  Let it hang loose!
Hold the stretch for 3-5 deep breaths.
Switch legs and repeat the steps.

These stretches are perfect to do at your desk.  Or at the kitchen table.  Or at a rest stop during a road trip.  Anywhere and everywhere.  Goal yourself to do these once a day.  Really focus on letting your muscles relax and taking deep breaths.

Let me know if you try these and what you think!

No comments:

Post a Comment

I love hearing from you! Please leave a comment. I will respond on this page, so make sure you you check the "Notify Me" box below right so that we can chat!