Getting home from a long day of not doing much – well movement that is? If you have been sitting still at a desk, in a car or holding a child perhaps the following are 7 great stretches to do before continuing on with your evening. Trust me you will feel a lot better doing this, instead of sitting more watching Netflix.
These will help you open your hips, hamstrings, spine, shoulders, and neck.
1. Reclined Butterfly – Start laying on the back. Bring the soles of the feet together and open the knees out to the sides. Reach your arms up overhead to open into the shoulders. Take deep cleansing breaths.
2. Side Sphinx – Straighten the legs. Roll onto the right side. Prop up on the right palm. Stack the hips, and feet. Push the palms into the ground. Sinking a little bit in the shoulder to deepen stretch in the right side body. To make less intense, walk the hand out further or onto the forearm.
3. Downward Dog with Leg Stretch Variation – Come up to hands and knees, with the hands a bit ahead of the shoulders. Tuck the toes, lift the knees and reach the hips up and back. Bend deep into the left knee, keeping the right leg straight. Push back into the right heel. Switch legs.
4. Standing Leg Stretch – Stand at the top of the mat with the feet hip width apart. Lean on the right leg. Pull the left knee into the belly. Take a few ankle rolls. Step the left foot back, keeping the feet hip width apart and toes tucked. Reach arms overhead. Bend generously in front knee.
5. Twists – Bring fingertips to floor and lower left knee to the mat. Move the right hand inside of the right leg. Reach the left arm up to the sky. In an open twist (away from the front leg). Looking up if it’s okay in the neck. After a few breaths, bring the left hand down to the floor. Reach the right hand up, opening into a closed twist (towards the leg).
Repeat 4 and 5 on other side.
6. Head to Knee – Come to a seat. Bring the left leg out in front of you, and right foot inside the left thigh. Keep everything facing forward. Inhale to lift the arms overhead. Exhale to fold down, stretching out of the low back.
7. Half Hero Pose – Bring the right foot back. Keeping the knee and thigh parallel to the long edges of the mat. Pressing the top of the right foot into the mat. Lift and tuck the tailbone. Then lower back, maybe onto the forearms, or possibly all the way down.
Repeat 6 and 7 on the other side.
These 7 stretches are a part of a 40 minute after work yoga class I shared on YouTube recently.