Before looking at the exercises, lets have a quick rundown of the benefits of stretching.

Physical

  • Sustain the muscles to be flexible and healthy,
  • Help with the range of motions in the joints
  • Possibly lessen an injury by preparing the muscles before an activity
  • Increases blood and nutrient supply to muscles, hence lessening muscle soreness

Mental 

  • Calm the mind
  • An opportunity for the body to regain energy
  • Release stress and anxiety
  • Increase awareness

Below are some stretching exercises to help achieve the above

Right and left over the head shoulder stretch 

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Relax your shoulder and cross one arm behind your head; hold and support it with your other hand with gentle pressure.

Neck Stretch 

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Tilt your head to either left or right, towards your left or right shoulder. Use the opposite hand to the side you are tilting to have a gentle pressure. You can turn your head left or right without tilting.

Right and left shoulder stretch 

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With your shoulders relaxed, cross one arm over your chest. Hold and support your other hand with gentle pressure.

Quad Pull Pulses

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Stand on either leg and kick the opposite leg with the same hand and keep it as close to your butt as possible. Switch legs.

Cobra to Child’s Pose

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Lie flat and place your hand flat on the ground, with your head up (A). Then slowly lift your hands as high as you can and remain for 2-5 seconds (B). Finally drop down slowly and stretch your arms away, where your body should move backward and remain for 2-5 seconds (C).

Pilates Saw

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Sit down and stretch your legs out straight as possible. Raise your hand and stretch it out to the opposite leg trying to touch your toe, while your other hand stretches to the back.

Butterfly and chest stretch 

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Sit down and place your feet together with the knees to your side. Slowly pull your thighs down and push your chest forward.

Back & Hamstring Windmill

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Stand with your feet and shoulder wide apart. Start at the top and reach down in a circular motion.

 

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