Looking for some effective stretching exercises? Try this quick 30 second stretch for the most bang for your buck.
If you’re looking for ways to feel awesome, start stretching.
A good stretch can wake you up, unlock tension, and make that too-long car ride seem less evil.
The good news is you don’t have to be a yogi to enjoy stretching. Not stretching because you’re not flexible is like skipping food because you’re haven’t had enough to eat.
It makes NO sense.
Everyone has thirty seconds for stretching exercises.
Period. No excuses. Don’t even try.
That’s why you have to try this sweet little stretching exercise. It’s super short, and it serves two purposes:
- To wake you up and help you feel more energized.
- To help lengthen those muscles that get too tight from sitting too much.
Since I tend to spend a lot of time at a computer (boo) I set a timer on my phone for every 20 minutes. Yes, every 20 minutes. When it goes off I stand up and run through this little stretch. It recharges me and keeps me focused on my work. So even though I’m interrupting my workflow, I’m actually more productive.
PLUS, I’m doing my stretch on doctor’s orders. My chiropractor’s orders, that is.
If I don’t get up and do my stretching exercises a couple times each hour HE KNOWS. I’ll go get adjusted and he knows that I’ve been cruel to my spine. And when I’m faithful to my stretch HE KNOWS. And I know. My back doesn’t hurt. My nasty “issues” from a long-ago car accident don’t come back to haunt me.
Stretching is that powerful. Especially for you folks who spend a lot of time sitting.
So all you have to do is try it. Ready?
Stretching Exercises: A 30 Energizing Sequence
1. Stand up and take a nice big breath. Reach your arms up high over your head. Open your heart. Reach back and up toward the sky. LOVE your backspace. Now, come back to vertical.
2. With your arms still over your head, clasp your hands. Now bend your arms as your send your hands behind your head. Only go as far as you can. Open the elbows sideways as you stretch your shoulders back. Now, release your hands and arms back to your side.
3. Send your right leg back behind you as your bend your left leg. Adjust your feet as needed as you go into a standing lunge. Reach your tailbone forward. Lengthen your hip flexors (the muscles that run along your hips) as much as you can. (If you want an even deeper stretch, try reaching both arms up over your head).
4. Keep breathing.
5. Repeat with your left leg back.
6. Come back to standing and reach your arms over your head again. Now swan dive into a forward fold. Only go as far as you can while keeping your legs straight. Breathe.
7. Now bend your knees and lengthen your back. Release your head completely. Stay folded forward, and take one final deep breath.
8. With your knees still bent, slowly roll up to standing.
Shake everything out and carry on.
Go ahead. Try it again.
The whole sequence may take a little longer than 30 seconds the first few times – especially as you first read through the instructions. But with time, it will become a simple no-brainer. You can do it WHENEVER you need to reconnect with your body.
For those who work at a desk, try doing this or other stretching exercises every 30 or 60 minutes. I’ll give you a gold star if you do it every 20 minutes. You’ll love at how it changes your day. You’ll love how it keeps your back and body happy.
Looking for more stretching exercises? Here’s a great five-minute one to help improve your posture.
What are your favorite stretching exercises?