Stretches to Do Before Bed

half-happy-baby

We mainly think of stretches as something to do before or after workouts, or to help us wake up in the morning. However, stretches can also help us to relax and feel more comfortable. If you are having trouble sleeping, stretching may help you to wind down. Even if you are not having trouble sleeping, stretching before bed may help to loosen up your muscles and joints so that you do not have pain and get a better sleep, after which you wake more refreshed. The following are a couple stretches that are great for helping you to relax before bed.

Spinal Twist

To start, lie on your back on your bed. Lift your right knee up gently, bringing it towards your chest, then cross it over the left side of your body, letting it hang slightly over the edge of the bed. Keep your chest facing the ceiling to give the spine a gentle twist. Extend your right arm straight out from your shoulder and turn it so that the palm is flat on the bed, face your head in that direction. Place your left hand on your hip and push gently to increase the stretch. Hold the position for about 30 seconds, then stretch the other side.

“Half Happy Baby” Hip Stretch

This position is a variation on the yoga pose “happy baby.” To start, lie flat on your back on your bed with your legs extended. Bend your right knee and bring it up to your chest, keeping your calf and foot sticking straight up in the air. Hold onto the sole of your foot with both hands and press your knee towards the bed, next to your torso. Keep your head. Torso, and other leg relaxed and on the bed. Release the right leg and stretch the left. This is good for opening up tight hips.

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