Do you wake up feeling stiff and sore until you get going? For most of us, by the time we are ready to get out of bed, we are already late so spring out of bed and rush round trying to get yourself and everyone else out of the house on time. This is actually the worst thing that you can do for your spine and is quite shocking for the rest of your body too!
Instead, Free Spirit Yoga Teacher Milly Chester suggests that you set the alarm clock 10 minutes early and wake up to do these morning stretches which will bring you and your body comfortably into the waking world 🙂
Stretching IN bed
First of all, start with your breath and inhale through your nose from the bottom of your lungs (just below your rib cage) all the way up to your collarbones and breath out again through your nose. Try to repeat these long slow breaths throughout the following sequence, holding each posture for 3 breaths.
1. Full body stretch: Shuffle down the bed or remove your pillow so that you are lying flat stretch your arms over your head and flex your feet for a full body stretch.
2. Lower back release: Next hug your knees to your chest and gently rock from side to side to massage the base of your spine and stretch into your lower back.
3. Spinal twist: Lying flat again draw your right knee up. Take your left hand to the outside of your right knee and pull it gently over to the left and look to your right. Repeat on the other side. Then hug your knees again.
On your way out…
4. Sitting head twists: Sitting on the edge of the bed with your feet planted hip width apart on the floor, turn your head and look to your right, come back to centre. Repeat on the other side.
5. Neck stretch: Take your chin to your chest to stretch out the back of your neck.
6. Neck semi-circles: Turn your head and look to the right again and then roll your head forward round to the left and go back the other way. (Always roll your head forward never back as its bad for your neck)
7. Shoulder stretch: Look straight ahead take your right ear towards your right shoulder (don’t be tempted to hunch your shoulders). Repeat on the other side.
You have made it!
8. Standing Side Lean: Stand up with your feet planted firmly hip width apart and reach your arms over your head, clasp your hands together, but release your index finger and cross your thumbs. Lifting up out of your waist and bend to the right (keeping your body in a straight line). Come back to centre and bend to the left. Repeat once more.
9. Hip hinge: Place your hands on your hips and bend forward from your hips, keeping your knees soft. Place your hands on your thighs or shins (wherever you’ve got to at this time in the morning) and take three rounds of breath.
10. Chest Opener: very slowly start to roll up (me placing your hands on your hips if you need some balance). Reach all the way up and take a very small backbend and bring your hands down by your side.
The whole routine should take between 3 and 5 minutes and should ease the pain of getting up!
Keep mobile and give yourself a little TLC every morning 🙂
Love Milly x