In our current age of technology, many of us find ourselves sitting in front of the computer for most of the day. All of this sitting can cause tightness in the hamstrings, shoulders, and hip flexors, as well as a weakening of the core (abdominals, lower back, and glutes).
Fortunately, regularly stretching can help reverse some of this tightness.
Here are 9 stretches that can help:
1. Child’s Pose (30 seconds).
1) Begin on your hands and knees in a tabletop position. Bring your big toes together and take your knees out wide.
2) Sit your hips back on your heels, and walk your hands forward until you can lower your forehead to the ground.
3) Once your forehead is on the ground, continue walking your hands out in front of you until your arms are straight.
2. Supine Figure 4 (30 seconds per side).
1) Begin by lying down on your back. Bend your knees and place your feet on the ground, hips-width distance apart.
2) Bend your right knee and place your right ankle above your left knee on the thigh. Loop your right hand through your legs and interlace your hands behind your left thigh.
3) Keep your head and shoulders on the ground as your draw the left thigh towards you. Hold for 30 seconds and then switch sides.
3. Figure 4 Twist (30 seconds per side).
1) Start by lying down on your back. Bend your knees and place your feet on the ground, hips-width distance apart.
2) Bend your right knee and place your right ankle above your left knee on the thigh. Cactus your arms by your head and flex your feet.
3) Allow your knees to gently fall to the right, keeping the right ankle over the left thigh, to bring your body into a twist. Hold for 30 seconds and then switch sides.
4. Runner’s Lunge (30 seconds per side).
1) Start in a tabletop position on your hands and knees. Step your right foot outside of your right hand.
2) Heel-toe the foot forward and out a couple of inches so that your right ankle is slightly in front of your right knee. Keep your left knee down.
3) Keeping your hands planted inside of your right foot, press your hips forward to feel a stretch through the front of your hips.
4) Hold for 30 seconds and then switch sides.
5. Adductor Opener (30 seconds).
1) Begin standing with your feet out wide, heels in, and toes pointing out at 45 degree angles.
2) Squat low like you are going to sit into a chair and then place your hands on your inner thighs.
3) Press your thighs open to feel a stretch through the inner thighs and groin. Hold for 30 seconds.
6. Wide-Legged Forward Fold (30 seconds).
1) Start standing with your feet out wide and your toes pointing straight ahead.
2) Bend into your knees as you fold your chest over your legs and bring your hands to the ground.
3) Keep the generous bend in your knees, and let your head hang heavy. Hold for 30 seconds and then slowly stand.
7. Cow Face Legs (30 seconds).
1) Starting in a seated position, place your bent right knee on top of your bent left knee.
2) Try to have your knees perfectly stacked, one on top of the other, and to have your feet flexed to protect your knees.
3) Both of your sit bones should be pressing into the ground. If this is not possible, then prop your hips up onto a blanket or pillow to allow equal and even weight on both sit bones. Sit up tall.
4) Hold for 30 seconds.
8. Seated Twist (30 seconds per side).
1) Start seated with your knees bent and your feet on the ground.
2) Draw your left heel in towards your right sit bone. Cross your right leg over your left to bring your right foot outside of your left thigh.
3) Tent your fingertips behind you and sit up tall. Take a deep breath as you lengthen through your spine.
4) Exhale to twist to the right, wrapping your left arm around the front of your right shin.
5) Hold for 30 seconds and then slowly untwist on an inhale. Switch sides.
9. Happy Baby (30 seconds).
1) Begin by lying down on your back. Bend your knees and draw them up towards your chest.
2) Bring your arms inside of your thighs and reach for the outside edges of your feet or ankles.
3) Take some gentle rocks side to side to massage the lower back. Hold for 30 seconds.
Trust us: soon your pain will be a thing of the past!