5 Morning Stretches to Start Your Day
What does a normal morning look like for you? Do you normally wake up feeling refreshed, energized, or feel a sudden lack of motivation and drive? When you think of a normal routine does that tend to make you feel better about starting your day or apply more pressure to what you have to get done? I have changed my routine so much at different times of my life to fit what I needed at the time, and that is perfectly okay.
Trying to be intentional with movement and breathing early on has helped me discover a new side of myself. I enjoy waking up and connecting with how my body feels, allowing my body to create movement. Stretching is such a good way to increase blood flow and pushes me to set the tone for the day. Feeling good in my own skin and having a good foundation provides me with more clarity and understanding of what we are really capable of. Your mindset is everything.
Morning stretches not only help welcome the new day, but allows us to embrace new beginnings. Accepting what has already happened, and reminding myself “this too shall pass”, breathing in the new air while releasing whatever is weighing on me. No matter how much time you have at the start of your day, make time to awaken your body and mind with a little breath, stretch and reflection.
Here are some to get you started:
1. Straight forward bend
- Begin by standing tall with your feet touching. You can bend your knees slightly and begin to fall forward at your waist with your torso coming into your knees. You will follow your hips as you bend and place your hands as close to the ground as you can get. You will begin your breathing by inhaling in and then as you exhale you will extend your body and try to straighten your legs.
- When you do this motion slowly it can help keep your spine steady and become flexible, directly adjusting your posture. It allows your mind and body to remain calm and reduce stress and anxiety.
2. Cat / cow
- To begin this stretch. you will be on all fours in a table position and your spine in neutral. When you start to breathe in, you will arch your back into cow pose, lifting your head upwards. As you exhale, round your spine into cat pose , tuck your chest and head inward.
- When you arch and round your back in this back and forth motion it can help support your balance and relieve your back pain over time. Guiding your breath through each motion can improve focus and coordination.
3. Child's pose
- For this position, you will kneel down with your toes together and knees aligned with your hips (both parallel to the ground) . As you lower your torso and extend your arms out as far as you can, you will then rest your forehead onto the floor when you are ready.
- This pose can release tension in your muscles and help with increasing blood circulation. Aids in breath work, and flexibility.
4. Downward facing dog
5. One legged down dog
- You will start this position in the downward dog position then shift your weight to one side by balancing on two hands and one leg while lifting the other leg out. Your shoulders and hips are squared and steady. Observe what your body is doing while getting into this position to ensure you are secure. By practicing this pose daily it will assist in elongating the spine, giving your hip flexors a good stretch, building more arm strength, and engaging your core.