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Stretching Day 6

DYNAMIC WARMUP

1. Rocking Feet w/ Arm Raise

  1. Stand straight up, comfortably, with your arms by your side.
  2. In one motion, lift your straight arms as high as you can above your head, while coming up onto the balls of your feet to your tiptoes.
  3. Then, in one motion, lower your straight arms and stretch them as far back behind you as you can while rotating your feet back onto your heels. Do this VERY slowly to make sure you can actually balance on your heels!
  4. Repeat the exercise in each direction 10-15 times for a total of 20-30 repetitions.

 

2. Plank w/ Shoulder Tap

  1. Start in a straight-arm plank (push-up position), with your wrists under your shoulders and your feet hip-width apart.
  2. Tighten your core, ground your toes on 
the floor, and squeeze your glute muscles 
to stabilize your body and keep it in one straight line from the top of your head 
down to your heels.
  3. Slowly and in a controlled manner, lift your right hand, tap your left shoulder, and then return to the plank position.
  4. Then, tap your right shoulder with your
left hand and continue alternating sides.
  5. Tap each shoulder 10-15 times for a total 
of 20-30 repetitions.

 

3. Split Squat

  1. Stand with feet shoulder-width apart.
  2. Step one foot forward as far as possible without losing form or balance.
  3. Bend both knees and lift the heel of your back foot up off of the ground, putting weight into the heel of the front foot. Ensure that your knee in front doesn’t overextend past your toes.
  4. Continue lowering your weight until your back leg shin and front leg thigh are nearly parallel to the ground.
  5. Pause for a count of two. Drive the heel of the front foot into the ground and stand to return to starting position.
  6. Staying in the same position (without moving your feet), lift yourself up and come back down into the squat 10-15 times.
  7. Switch legs and perform the same movement on the other side for another 10-15 reps.

 

 

UPPER BODY STRETCHES

1. Side Neck Tilt

Starting position: Stand with your feet 
hip-width apart and arms down by your sides, 
or sit in a chair with your back straight.

  1. Gently tilt your head toward your right shoulder and try to touch it with your ear, while stretching to point the other ear to 
the ceiling.
  2. Hold the stretch for 15 seconds, then return to the start position.
  3. Perform the same stretch on your left side. Hold for 15 seconds.

2. Forward & Backward Neck Tilt

Starting position: Stand with your feet hip-width apart and arms down by your sides, or sit in a chair with your back straight up.

  1. Stand straight with your feet hip-width 
apart and arms down by your sides.
  2. Gently reach your chin directly forward in front of you as far as you can, as if you were trying to touch the wall in front of you with your chin.
  3. Hold the stretch for 3-5 seconds, then return 
to the starting position.
  4. Pull your chin inward, as if you were trying 
to pull it into your spine. Hold for 3-5 seconds, and return to the starting position.
  5. Repeat both stretches in succession for 
30 seconds.

3. Child's Pose

Starting position: Get into a tabletop position, 
with your hands directly under your shoulders 
and your knees in line with your hips.

  1. Push your butt back towards your feet as far 
as possible.
  2. Stretch your arms out on the floor in front of you until you feel like your spine is elongating.
  3. Reach forward with your fingers to further elongate the spine, to the extent that it feels good and comfortable.
  4. Hold the stretch for 60 seconds and deepen 
the stretch when you feel it is possible by further elongating your spine.


4. Sphinx/Cobra

Starting position: Lie on your stomach on 
the floor, as if you were sleeping on the floor 
on your belly.

  1. Slowly prop yourself up on your elbows, bringing the upper half of your torso up 
off the ground.
  2. Start to straighten your elbows, further extending your back and lifting more of your torso off the ground, until you feel a gentle stretch in your spine. Only lift yourself to the extent that it feels right and comfortable.
  3. Hold the stretch for 30 seconds.

5. Corner Chest Stretch

Starting position: Stand at a corner between 
two walls, about 1 foot away from the corner 
of the wall.

  1. Place one arm on each wall, with each forearm and palm resting comfortably on a wall.
  2. Lean in towards the wall as much as possible 
as you feel the stretch in your chest.
  3. Lean your head back as the front of your neck stretches, with your chin reaching towards 
the ceiling.
  4. Hold for 30 seconds.

6. Leaning Long Arm Shoulder Stretch

Starting position: Choose an object you can hold 
in front of you that is high enough for you to grab with your hands, and sturdy enough that it won’t fall when you fold your body over (think: table or chair). Ideally, it should be somewhere in between belly and chest-height. Stand in front of the object and grab it with your hands.

  1. Take a few steps back to give yourself space, and shift your body weight forward, bending 
at the waist to create a stretch in the chest and shoulder muscles.Elongate the arms and spine as much as possible while trying to open the chest and shoulder muscles by pushing your torso towards the ground.
  2. Hold for 30 seconds.

7. Standing Oblique Stretch

Starting position: Stand with your feet slightly wider than hip-width apart, and with a slight bend in the knees.

  1. Place your right hand on your hip, and raise your left arm straight up above your body.
  2. Lean your torso towards the right, bending 
at the right side of the waist. Keep the knee 
on the leg you’re leaning towards slightly bent.
  3. Try not to actually move your hips, but simply bend towards the right until you feel a stretch in your left obliques (the muscles on the left side of your abdomen).
  4. Hold for 15 seconds.
  5. Relax, and then repeat the same stretch 
on the other side.

 

 

LOWER BODY STRETCHES

1. Frog Pose

Starting position: Lie facedown, bend your 
knees about 90 degrees, and spread them 
as wide as you can.

  1. Fold your hands under your forehead 
to relax the upper half of the body.
  2. Keeping your knees bent, sink your hips towards the floor.
  3. Hold for 60 seconds, and deepen the stretch by sinking your hips more towards the floor whenever possible.

2. Pigeon Stretch

Starting position: Start by getting into a tabletop position on your hands and knees.

  1. Bring your right knee forward and place it behind your wrist while shifting the leg so 
that your right ankle is in front of your left 
hip or left elbow.
  2. Straighten your left leg behind you, making sure your left knee is straight and your toes 
are pointed out behind you.
  3. Keeping your hips square, lower your 
torso towards the ground until you feel 
the maximum possible stretch that feels comfortable for you.
  4. Hold the position for 30 seconds.
  5. Repeat the same stretch on the left leg.

3. Downward Dog

Starting position: Begin on all fours, with your knees hip-width apart and your hands directly below your shoulders.

  1. Press back into your heels to straighten your knees and raise your butt up to the ceiling until you feel the stretch in your hamstrings. If you need to, extend your arms forward so that you can straighten your legs a bit more.
  2. Keep your head, neck, and spine aligned as you press back into the feeling of the stretch in the back of your legs and calves.
  3. Hold for 30 seconds, deepening the stretch whenever it feels comfortable to do so.

4. Wig-Wag

Starting position: Lie on your back, with your knees bent on the floor and your arms to the side.

  1. Pull your right leg towards your chest and twist your body to the left, trying to touch your right knee to the floor on the left side of your body.
  2. Use your left arm to pull your leg and deepen the stretch to the extent it feels good and comfortable.
  3. Hold for 30 seconds, deepening the stretch whenever possible.
  4. Return to the starting position, and then perform the same stretch on the other side.

5. Warrior II Pose

Starting position: Stand with your feet double shoulder length apart and your arms extended horizontally with your palms facing down.

  1. Turn your left foot our about 90 degrees, and then bend your left knee into a lunge. Your right foot should still be pointing forwards. If this feels too comfortable, try to widen the distance between your legs by swiveling your left leg further away from the right foot.
  2. Turn your head to the left and look over your fingers.
  3. Hold for 30 seconds, and then return to the starting position.
  4. Perform the same sequence with your right side and hold for 30 seconds.

6. Pry Squat

Starting position: Stand with feet about 1.5 shoulder-distance apart with your feet comfortably pointed outwards away from your body.

  1. Sit into a squat and place your elbows on the inside of your knees. Feet should be pointed outwards away from your body. If you can’t do this, get into a comfortable squat, and lean your hands on your elbows for support.
  2. While trying to make sure both feet are completely flat on the ground, deepen the squat as much as you can by lowering closer to the floor.
  3. Use your arms to press your knees as far out as is comfortable while still maintaining a tight core and proper squat form with your spine as straight as possible, without arching your spine.
  4. Hold for 30 seconds and deepen the stretch whenever possible.

 

7. Standing Quad Stretch

Starting position: Stand with your whole 
body relaxed.

  1. While balancing on your left foot, grab the bottom of your right shin, where it meets 
your foot, by bending your leg behind you.
  2. Tuck your pelvis in, and pull your shin 
toward your butt (glutes), making sure your knee is pointing to the ground, or as close to the ground as possible.
  3. Hold for 30 seconds, deepening the stretch whenever it feels comfortable to do so.
  4. Relax and perform the same stretch on 
the other leg.