During the day, most people tend to sit much more than they should. Although sitting sometimes is fine, doing it too often can lead to decreased flexibility and back pain. It also puts you at a higher risk of being injured as your body doesn’t have the strength it needs to protect itself.
The best way that you can offset the damage done by not moving enough is to do daily stretches. The ones below can be done by anyone, every day. Here are 10 easy stretches you can do for increased flexibility.
1. Standing Forward Bend
- Stand with your legs straight and your feet shoulder-width apart.
- While keeping your back straight and engaging your core, slowly bend forward.
- Bend as far as you can go. If you can reach the floor, then feel free to rest your hands on the ground below you.
2. Back Extension
- In a seated position, raise both your arms above your head.
- Lift your arms and lean back as far as you can comfortably go.
- Return to your regular position, then repeat.
3. Neck Rotation
- Sit or stand with your back straight.
- Slowly turn your head to the left until you feel a small stretch, then hold it there.
- Turn your head back to the center, then to the left and hold again.
4. Tricep Stretch
- Either sitting or standing, raise your right arm above your head, then bend at the elbow so that your arm is at the middle of your upper back.
- Grab the top of your right elbow with your left hand a pull lightly until you feel a stretch.
- Repeat with the other arm.
5. Shoulder Squeeze
- Sit with your back straight.
- Lower your shoulders and bring your shoulder blades together as far as they can go, then hold and repeat.
6. Standing Quad Stretch
- Stand with your legs straight and feet shoulder-width apart.
- Bend your right leg back behind you, holding your ankle with your right arm. Pull your leg as close to your back as you can.
- Hold, then lower your leg and repeat on the other side.
7. Lying Hip Flexor Stretch
- Lie on your back with your legs extended.
- Interlace your fingers and pull your right knee to your chest, while keeping your left leg straight.
- Hold, then release and repeat for the other leg.
8. Butterfly Stretch
- Lie on your back with your arms above your head.
- Bend your legs and bring the soles of your feet together.
- With your feet touching, bring your knees as far to the floor as they can comfortably go and hold.
It’s important to note that while doing these stretches, you shouldn’t feel any pain or burning sensations. Listen to your body, and if something hurts, stop.
Take a few minutes out of your day, every day, and you’ll soon begin to feel the great benefits of them. You’ll feel less stiff, more flexible, and will avoid causing damage to your back from sitting for too long.
Do you know someone who could benefit from these easy stretches? If so, share this article with them.