Stretching daily helps you to stay healthy in several ways. It keeps you flexible, can improve your posture, helps with range of motion, can reduce pain, and helps to prevent injury too. If you stretch regularly or you want to start doing so, you might stretch when you get up in the morning or before going to bed at night. Some people take time to stretch during their break at work, especially when they spend hours sitting at a desk. Whether daily stretching is something new for you or you want to make some changes to your routine so you can benefit more from it, adding some stretches to your routine is a good idea.
Lumbar Trunk Rotation
This stretch is good for stretching out your hips and your lower back. You can even do it in bed! Lying on your back, with your knees up and your feet flat, gently lower your knees to one side. You should start to feel a stretch in the opposite hip and your back. After a few seconds, return your knees to the center, and then repeat the stretch on the other side. You can also stretch out your arms on either side of your head while doing this.
Elbow Out Rotator Stretch
A lot of us spend time hunched over desks or other things, and this stretch can help to counteract the effects of that. It’s designed to stretch the rotator cuffs in your shoulders. From a standing position or sitting up straight, put one hand in the middle of your back with your palm and your elbow facing out. With the opposite hand, reach across the front of your body to take hold of your arm and pull slightly forward. Hold for 60 seconds and repeat on the other side.
Child’s pose is a yoga position that is great for the back and also helps to stretch the rest of your body too. Kneel down with the backs of your feet on the floor, then sit back on your heels. Lean forward so that your chest comes down to the ground and stretch your arms out in front of you. If your arms need a break, you can also put them behind you. This can be a pretty comfy position to stretch in.
Stretching your legs out can feel great, whether it’s before or after exercising, at the end of a long day, or if you’ve been sitting still for a long time. Stretch out your calves by standing with your hands on a wall or the back of a chair. With your feet, one in front of the other, keep your back straight and bend your front knee slightly. Keep your back leg straight and bend forward with your front knee to stretch the calf in your back leg.
Your neck can easily be uncomfortable from hunching over your desk or sleeping in the wrong position. Gentle neck stretches can help it to feel better. Relax your shoulders and move your left ear toward your left shoulder. You can use your left arm to help but only stretch as far as is comfortable. Hold for 15-20 seconds, then repeat on the other side.
Be sure to be gentle and go slowly when you’re stretching to avoid injury and gain the full benefit of the stretches.
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