Today's topic is back stretches. This particular week I have had 2 of my blog readers actually email me to ask about what stretches they can do to help a tight lower and upper back. If you're one of those people who tend to wake up in the morning with a tight back as well, then be sure to do the stretches I list today.
Stretch #1, lay in a supine position (on your back) with you legs straight out in front of you. Gently, bring your knees into your chest and hug your knees. When you do this stretch, you should feel some relief on your lower back but you also may feel your hip flexors too. Slowly circle your knees while holding them in one direction and then switch to another. Stop circling them and gently pull them in to your chest holding for 60 seconds and slowly release.
Stretch #2, Sit on the floor with your legs straight out in front of you. Take a deep breath while bringing your arms up to the sky. As you exhale, gently bring your arms straight out in front of you over your toes holding this stretch for 60 seconds. Don't worry if you aren't flexible! Just bring your arms as far as you can and tuck your chin...don't forget to BREATHE. This is one of my favorite stretches because not only does it stretch your back, but it also stretches your hamstrings which are usually tight if your lower back hurts.
Stretch #3, Lay on the floor once again in a supine position. Bring your arms out into a "T" (directly to your sides at shoulder height) and slowly bring one knee up to your chest. Keeping your shoulders planted firmly on the floor, gently bring one knee over to one side. Whichever side your knee is on, turn your head the opposite way...keeping your shoulders in the "T" position and breathe. Hold this stretch for 60 seconds then slowly release and do the opposite leg.
Stretch #4, Stand up nice and tall with your feet shoulder width apart. Reach your arms up high into the sky with a deep inhale. As you exhale, slowly bring your arms down in front of you as though you are trying to touch your toes and hang. DO NOT BOUNCE! Ballistic movement is a no-no. Keep yourself in a static stretch while continuing to breathe...hold for 60 seconds.
Stretch #5, requires a foam roller. In a seated position with your knees bent and feet flat, gently slide the foam roller behind you. Have the length of the foam roller be parallel to the length of your back. Gently lay back with the foam roller on your back with your hips up and feet flat. Slowly bring your arms up off the floor to your sides in an airplane position. The placement of the foam roller should be in between your shoulder blades. Engage your abs, close your eyes and just breathe...hold this stretch for 60 seconds. This one is my absolute FAVORITE!
Take all five stretches that I've listed for you today and do NO LESS THAN 3 sets of them at least twice a day and you will definitely start to feel some release in your back as the tension melts away...enjoy!
So now that you're nice and relaxed, let's get into today's video! Today's "Fitness is Fun with your Kids!" video is simply that...having fun with your kids! Warning...when you watch it, know that my son Pry'nce is pretty much running the video clip for August. Here's the deal, there are NO RULES when it comes to having fun with your kid(s) via exercise except just that...HAVE FUN! So turn on the stereo or ipod docking station and GET MOVING!!
Thanks as always for taking the time to read my blog and feel free to post any comments or questions you may have. Also, join my blog as a follower, sign up to receive it via email or follow me on twitter @FITDIVAFAMISHA today!
As Always...Stay Fit and Happy!