We spend most of our day in the same position - sitting, interrupted sometimes but standing and walking. Even if we hit the gym or do our preferred workout method, our bodies are mostly in the same position.
Stretching increases flexibility, range of motion, and blood flow. It also improves posture, up-levels performance in physical activities, prevents and relieves pain, and does wonders for stress relief.
With all these benefits I’m sure you’re eager to get your stretch on. Here are some easy and effective stretches to incorporate into your day:
Good Morning Stretch
Stretch in the morning to awaken your body and get that blood pumping. Start your day off right with this simple good morning stretch for your back.
- Sit at the edge of your bed with your feet grounded on the floor
- Bend over, reaching your hands toward your feet
- Arch your back
- Hold while counting to 10, remembering to breathe
- Repeat 5 times
Improve Your Posture Stretch
This stretch is especially beneficial for those of us who sit at a computer all day. If you can find time during your workday to stretch this out, all the better. This stretch improves your posture (no more hunching) and loosens up the pec muscles.
- Facing a corner, stand in an upright position with feet parallel and knees slightly bent. Keep your eyes forward and your chin tucked slightly
- Place your palms on the walls on either side of the corner at shoulder height
- Inhale. As you exhale, pull your lower ab muscles in toward your spine and lean forward into your hands. Stop when it feels challenging but not painful
- Hold for 15-30 seconds and come back to standing upright
- Repeat 10 times
Tip: The most important thing to remember about this stretch is to move your whole body together as one unit. Be sure to keep your shoulders down, not scrunched up.
Midday Energy Boost Stretch
Time to fight the post lunch slump and get the energy back up? Try this easy stretch that’s good for the neck...you can even get away with it in your office if no one is looking.
- Stand up straight with arms at your sides
- Bring both hands behind your back and pull your left wrist down with your right hand
- Gently pull your left arm toward the right side of your body as you lower your right ear to your shoulder
- Hold for 3 deep breaths
- Relax back into the start position
- Switch sides
Lower Back + Goodnight Stretch
From sitting at a computer to driving, lower back pain is something that plagues us all from time to time. Stretch it out with these simple moves. Bonus: These are great for relaxing at the end of the day before bedtime.
- On the floor or on your bed, lie down flat on your stomach and rest. You may want to bring one cheek to the floor and switch halfway through to keep it even
- Hold this position for 1-2 minutes
- Pop up onto your elbows, making sure to keep your neck in alignment with your body
- Hold for 1-2 minutes
From here you can transition right into your favorite sleep position, feeling extra awesome about yourself because you gave some love to your body.
What's your favorite stretch? Let us know in the comments!