Morning Stretch Routines to Do at Home
Getting up in the morning isn’t easy if you have a tough day in the office ahead. Starting with some light exercise and stretching will help you overcome the feeling of sluggishness and muscle stiffness.
Regular morning stretches increase the blood flow to your muscles and joints and make them less prone to injuries during the day. If you plan to spend the day sitting in front of the computer, you can at least give your lower back a nice stretch before you leave home.
Before You Start
There are some things to consider before you pick up a morning stretch routine. Here are some of the most common challenges you may face.
If you used to get up at 6:00, your morning stretch routine will require you to get up half an hour earlier. Chronic fatigue may start to build up after the seventh morning, so it will take some inner motivation to keep up the good work. Even if you see little or no result after the tenth session, it’s essential to remain focused on the bigger goal: to make your tendons and joints more flexible and stress-resistant.
The Age Factor
Stretching may benefit joints and muscles, but your age also makes a difference. Muscle and joint flexibility decrease with age. If you are over 50, you should first consult a physiotherapist or watch some informative videos on stretch.com.
Should I Stretch Every Morning?
Sticking to your morning stretch routine religiously will probably make you grumpy and stressed during the day. We all have ups and downs, so you don’t need to push yourself to stretch if you don’t feel like it. Stretching three mornings a week is just fine.
Morning Stretching Routines that Work
You can find dozens of websites that list ten or more morning stretching routines. However, if you have to remember ten different stretching exercises early in the morning, chances are that you’ll omit at least four.
There are three basic stretching positions: lying on your exercise mat or in bed, standing, and sitting. It’s enough to start with two exercises in each position, or six exercises in total.
While Lying in Bed
Start with a simple stretch
As soon as we wake up in the morning, we instinctively stretch. The natural stretch you’ve done for as long as you can remember is the best way to start your routine in the morning.
While lying flat on your back and prioritizing your to-dos, grab one of your knees with both hands and gently pull it towards your chest. Hold for 5 seconds and then change the legs. Five or six reps with each leg should do.
You should feel a nice, relieving stretch along your glutes and lower back. This exercise also relieves any tension that might have built up in the hip joint. However, people with osteoporosis or lower back issues should avoid it.
Lying in bed or on the mat, raise one of your knees and gently roll it over to the opposite side. For best results, both of your shoulders must stay on the mat. This exercise stretches your back muscles, hips, and glutes.
Stretches from a Standing Position
This is a very popular stretching technique because it directly oxygenates the brain. So, grab your head with one arm right above the ear and gently bend it towards the shoulder. At the same time, try pushing the opposite shoulder as far down as possible.
Plant your feet at shoulder width. Then, raise your hands above your head. Gently lean to the left and then to the right. For an even better side stretch, you can clasp your hands.
While Sitting in Bed
You are already thinking about your first cup of coffee for the day. Hold this positive thought. Clasp your hands over your head and reach over as far as you can. Hold this position for 15 seconds and then relax.
Stretching Techniques to Avoid in The Morning
There are stretching techniques that are dangerous to perform in the morning. The final section provides some details.
This popular ab stretching exercise can be dangerous if your core muscles haven’t warmed up. Doing it in bed can result in an ab strain or lower back injury.
Standing Quad Stretch
This is the perfect stretch after a brutal leg workout. However, it’s unwise to do it in the morning, when your quads are still sleepy.