10 Stretches You Need To Do Every Morning

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Are you a morning person? If not, you may become one by implementing stretching in your morning routine. We lay in the same position for 7-9 hours a night, and stretching increases blood flow to our stiff areas waking up the body. Flexibility is an essential fitness component, so we need to do it every day. Start your day off right; relieve stress and pressure by adding these stretches to your morning.

Childs Pose

Stretches the lower back, messages abdominals, and aids in digestion.

  1. Start by kneeling and ascending the hips and buttocks toward your heels.
  2. Place arms overhead with palms facing down.
  3. Place your head toward the ground.
  4. Relax and press your belly to the thighs.
  5. Breathe and hold for 4-12 breaths.
  6. Repeat at least 3x.

Quad Rockers

Quad rockers are great hip openers relieving pressure from the lower back while stretching the front of the legs.

  1. Start on all fours with your hands directly over your shoulders and knees under your hips.
  2. Rock forward gently while tucking your glutes forward.
  3. Lean until you feel a stretch in your quads and hip flexors.
  4. Hold for 30 seconds and return to the starting position.
  5. Repeat as needed.

Cat-Cow Pose

Releases pressure in your lower back, improves circulation to the spine, and massages organs in the abdominals.

  1. Rise from child’s pose on all fours, with feet flat, shoulders over wrists, and hips in line with your knees.
  2. Inhale and drop your belly to the ground, slightly arching your back with buttocks to the sky (cat).
  3. Exhale and contract abdominals slightly up, round the back, while pressing your hands into the ground (cow).
  4. Repeat this movement five times.

Forward Bend

Stimulates the kidney, liver, and digestion. This wakes up the brain and relieves stress. In addition, it stretches the hamstrings and glutes.

  1. Inhale and bend at your hips toward the floor.
  2. Keep your legs straight while bending to an area where you feel discomfort but not pain.
  3. Place your hands where you can reach them, ideally on the ground in front of you.
  4. Release tension from your head and neck.
  5. Repeat up to 5 times and hold for 30 seconds each time.

Neck Stretch

Done seated or standing. Stretching the neck is important to help relax the top of the shoulders. A stiff neck can lead to pain and tension headaches, and poor posture.

  1. Position your body straight forward and shoulders square.
  2. Gently tilt your head to the side and try to touch your ear to your shoulders.
  3. Stop when you feel a gentle stretch on the side of your neck.
  4. Hold for 15-30 seconds.
  5. Repeat on the other side.

 Seated Lower Back Twist

Works your spine, abdominals, and shoulders, and the pressure stimulates your internal organs.

  1. Sit in a comfortable position on the ground, legs crossed.
  2. Start with your shoulders square.
  3. Bring both arms to one side, trying to reach behind your legs.
  4. Twist to where you feel a stretch.
  5. Hold for 15-30 seconds.
  6. Repeat on the other side.

Chest Stretch

The chest stretch improves the mobility in your pectoral muscles, which helps support posture. Depending on your flexibility, it can be done with a towel or freehand.

  1. Start standing or kneeling.
  2. Keep your spine upright and gently bring your arms behind you.
  3. If you have a towel, grab it in one hand, and meet the other side of the towel with your other hand.
  4. If you are using your hands, meet one hand with the other clasping them.
  5. Hands clasped, raise them behind you gently until you feel a stretch.
  6. Hold for 30 seconds.
  7. Repeat 3-5 times.

Shoulder Stretch

Shoulder stiffness is caused by poor posture. Flexible shoulders relieve pressure off of the neck, preventing pain and tension related headaches.

  1. Start sitting or standing.
  2. Grab the upper arm above your elbow with the opposite hand.
  3. Pull it gently across your chest until you feel a slight pull.
  4. Make sure your elbow is at shoulder height.
  5. Hold for 30 seconds and repeat on the other side.

Triceps Stretch

This stretches your triceps and trap muscles (the upper shoulders). In addition, it helps to open up the chest and engage your core.

  1. Start by sitting or standing.
  2. Keep your back upright and shoulders square.
  3. Bring one arm overhead in between your shoulder blades dropping your forearm.
  4. With the opposite hand, grab the elbow pulling the bicep toward the ear.
  5. Hold for 30 seconds and repeat.

Be Cautious

When performing stretches, it is important to do everything in moderation. Do not push your body to the point of pain and know your limits. It is okay if you do not have the flexibility to perform the exercises at their full capacity. Keep practicing every day until you can go deeper into the stretches. This will improve your range of motion and limit stiffness throughout the body. If you find your stiffness not improving after continuous practice, then talk to your doctor about the best options for you.

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