10 Moves And Stretches To Do Before Breakfast
For those that find themselves waking up sore every single day, it may be time to consider a morning stretching routine. Here is a closer look at 10 simple stretches that can be done first thing in the morning.
1. Upward Stretch
Stretches can be done before even getting out of bed, and the upward stretch is a great place to start. Simply interlace your fingers and stretch your arms upwards with your palms facing the ceiling to elongate the spine and improve circulation.
2. Neck and Shoulders
While staying in the same position, it is time to begin warming up the neck and shoulders. This can be done by dropping your chin to your chest and then slowly turning your head from side to side in order to loosen up any knots that have developed overnight.
3. Spinal Twist
A spinal twist can be done either in bed or on the floor depending on one’s flexibility and comfort. For this move you must lay on your back, keep your legs together, bend them at the knees slightly, and then twist your torso to the right and the left while holding at the farthest point in the stretch for 10 seconds or longer.
4. Lying Quad Stretch
This is another stretch that can be done before ever getting out of bed and it will help loosen and lengthen the muscles going up and down the legs. Lay on your side with your body as straight as possible before bending your knee and grabbing your ankle for 30 seconds to a minute.
According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, hamstring injuries remain one of the most common injuries for athletes and those living an active lifestyle. While lying down on your back, lift one leg at a time without bending your knees. When the stretch is uncomfortable but not painful, hold the position for another 30 seconds and then switch legs.
The calves are another great muscle to stretch and will help to protect your feet and Achilles tendon. Stand with your feet shoulder width apart and then gently lean forward while balancing yourself on a wall or piece of furniture without bringing your heels off the ground.
7. The Runner’s Stretch
The runner’s stretch will help to loosen the backside of the legs as well as one’s glutes and lower back. While sitting on the ground, tuck one leg in with the other leg as straight as possible. Then, lean forward until the move is uncomfortable and hold the position for 30 seconds.
8. Cat/Cow Stretch
The cat stretch is one of the most important movements as it helps release tension throughout one’s core. Resting comfortably on your hands and knees, tilt your head back and allow your midsection to drop until you feel tightness. After holding the position, reverse the movement with your head all the way down and your shoulders and back arched upwards.
9 . Chest Release
The pectoral muscles are notoriously difficult to stretch effectively, but the chest release will help to elongate these muscles. Holding a wall or doorway with a single arm, twist to the opposite side with your hips and hold for 5 or 6 deep breaths.
10. Forward Bend
The final stretch is a simple movement, but it is also one of the most beneficial. With your feet together, simply bend over until the stretch is uncomfortable without bending your knees at all. Hold the position for a minute or longer.
One of the absolute best ways to start your day is with a variety of stretches and other dynamic movements that will help improve circulation, warm up the muscles, increase blood flow to the brain, and release endorphins.