Want To Boost Your Flexibility? Try These Stretches

When you’re getting into shape, what’s the first thing on which you like to focus? Whether you’re trying to lose weight or tone up your body, there are a whole load of ways out there to do so, helping you to focus on different areas of your body. When it comes to flexibility, however, you might turn up your nose and leave it for another day. It’s worth giving the challenge a second look. Maintaining good elasticity will help to keep your muscles in shape for a whole lot longer, giving you a greater range of movement as you age. These stretches will make keeping up your flexibility incredibly easy, slotting into your existing workout routine and boosting your all round health.

Hip Opener

Best approached either after a workout or as a separate activity on its own, this stretching workout will focus on different areas of your body, helping you to get each area in really great shape. For the hip opener, you need to lie on an exercise mat, positioning your butt and legs against a wall. Extend your legs upwards and press them against the facing wall, flexing your feet. Slowly, open up your legs, keeping going until you feel a stretch. Hold the pose for 60 seconds before bringing the legs back up, repeating the move another 4 times.

Deep Lunges

While traditional lunges will help to strengthen your muscles, deep lunges can go that step further, giving tight leg muscles a good extension. To complete this move, start off on all fours, stepping your left leg forwards. Place your left foot out on the floor in front of you, bending your knee 90 degrees. Now, gently push your hip forwards until you feel a stretch, holding the pose for 30 seconds. Switch sides, being sure to hold your chest up as you do. Repeat 4 times, pulling your back foot up to your glute if you want a deeper stretch.

Lower Body Hug

While this move might take you a while to really perfect, it can help to extend out a huge section of your core muscles. Standing on an exercise mat, reach your arms to the ceiling and bend your body down at the hips, folding over as far as you can. Hold the backs of your ankles or legs and straighten out your spine, dropping your head down in front of you. Hold this for 30 seconds and return to the starting position, repeating another 3 times.

Thread The Needle

A little more tricky to pull off, this move is really worth practicing as doing so will have your body feeling all the more relaxed. Starting on all fours, reach your right hand under your left arm until the shoulder is touching the ground. Hold the move for 30 seconds, reaching as high upwards with your left arm as you can. Return to the start, switch sides and repeat the move another 3 times. You will be destressed before you know it!

Heel Drop

Designed to stretch out that hard to reach area of your foot, this stretch is incredibly effective and will have you feeling all the more loose. Standing with your feet a hip’s width apart, face your body opposite a sturdy block or step. Now, place the ball of your right foot on the edge of the step and gently straighten out your leg so that your heel is positioned towards the floor. Hold on for balance if you need, staying in place for 30 seconds before moving on to the other side.

Hip Flexor

Your legs might have a tendency of tightening up, especially after having been put through their paces. If your hefty exercise regime is getting on top of your muscles, it’s worth looking to a deep quad stretch in order to keep things limber and light. That’s where the hip flexor comes in. Easy to pick up and effective, the move will have your legs a whole lot more supple in practically no time at all. Start off kneeling on the floor with both knees bent, keeping your shins in front of you. Now, lunge your right leg forward so that your knee is at a 90 degree angle and your foot is flat on the floor. Place both hands on top of your right knee and apply a light amount of pressure. Hold the pose for 30 seconds before repeating again on the other side.

Wave Goodbye To Back Pain With These Posture Improving Moves

Bad posture habits can soon become a real pain. If you fail to sit in the right position throughout the day, you risk doing your back some serious harm and over time, you can really start to feel the consequences. Fixing your back starts with your fitness routine and once you start to make a few changes to your routine, you can seriously notice the difference. Improving your posture all starts with building up your strength. By focusing your attention on certain daily habits, you can start to hold yourself up higher and feel all the benefits. These toning tips are for more than just looking good and once you make them a part of your daily routine, you might wonder how you ever did without them in the first place.

Stretch and Go

The state of your physical health plays a huge role in the health of your emotional wellbeing. Taking proper care of your body feeds into every part of your normal life, helping to make even the most mundane of tasks a whole lot more easy. If going to the gym to workout doesn’t appeal to you, there are hundred of other choices out there, targeted towards different areas of your fitness. If you’re starting off with focusing on your posture, there are a number of simple routines that you can get under your belt in order to make the task a whole lot more easy. Shoulder rolls, chest releases and side bends will all help to tone up your core muscle groups and make holding yourself tall that bit easier. You can improve your health in baby steps and see all the positive effects it can have.

Turn To Technology

We’re a generation of slouchers. Never before have some many people had so many back and neck problems and the issue comes largely down to the fact that so few of us are able to hold our bodies in the right way. Slouching has been described as the smoking of our generation and if you do it for too long, you might start to notice adverse side effects. If you’re struggling to hold yourself up straight in the office, however, there are a number of ways to get around the problem. You can try to make the move to a standing desk like so many others, making it easier to elongate the spine. You might also like to try your hand at muscle stimulation technology, which is designed to monitor your sitting posture. Used alongside exercise, these tools can help you to understand more about the way you hold yourself and how you can improve it.

Sit Up Straight

Practicing good working posture can make all the difference to how you feel at the end of the day. Getting into the habit of holding yourself up straight will make perfecting your posture a whole lot easier, improving the strength of your muscles at the same time. Your natural sitting pose is the best for your back, helping to keep your spine and joints pressure free over stretches of time. You should hold yourself in a position that is straight but comfortable to keep up for some time. Try and maintain a 90 degree angle between your arms and your keyboard so that you don’t have to lean forwards in order to work. Your screen should also be at the right height so that you avoid craning upwards to read what you’re writing. Experiment with the angling of your equipment and lock things in place.

Breathe Deeply

Practicing meditation can work wonders for both your physical and mental wellbeing. If you’re practicing bad posture, you’re more likely to suffer from shallow, insufficient breathing as your body lacks the space in which to take really deep breaths. Bad posture and bad breathing are interconnected and over time, they can take a toll on your general health. Breathing practices and meditation can seriously help to turn things around, however. Sitting on a yoga mat, place both of your hands on your diaphragm, in the center below your lungs. Using your hands as a guide, breathe in to extend the diaphragm, feeling it move as you do so. As you exhale, your diaphragm should become move inwards, expelling the air from your body. Holding your body straight will allow you to breathe deeply like this, making it simpler to extend the diaphragm. Practicing this technique once a day can help you to get into better posture practices, making it easier to hold yourself in the right way.