Bend and Stretch

I don’t stretch enough, do you?  I workout 4-5 times a week and really only remember to stretch maybe once a week.  I keep saying I want to take a weekly gentle yoga class, but I never seem to put that plan into action.  I think, like most things, I need to gently get myself into this practice.  

I recently read that short bouts of stretching 3 times a week can maintain flexibility as well as a longer session just once a week.  This I can do and so can you.  Daniel Cipriani, PhD, of San Diego State University suggests this program twice a day, 3 days a week:   Hold each stretch for 10 seconds and repeat 3 times.

Doorway Chest Opener:  Stand facing a doorway and stretch arms out to the sides, elbows bent, forearms and palms pressing into the door jam.  Walk forward to feel the stretch in chest and arms. 

Desk-Chair Hip Stretch:  Stand about 2 feet in front of a sturdy chair that won’t move and place your right foot on the seat, hands on hips.  Shift weight forward to feel a stretch in front of left hip.  Hold for 10 seconds and switch sides. 

Computer Neck De-Kinker:  Place right hand on top of head, gently pulling to right and lowering right ear toward shoulder.  Hold for 10 seconds and switch sides. 

This is a quick and easy stretch routine that can be done first thing in the morning and then again before bed.  I have 5 minutes to spare.   What are some of your favorite stretches?

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