Morning Stretches

Morning Stretches

In November of 2021, I read an article written by Jeff Steen published in the Fort Lauderdale Sun Sentinel. It was about an easy exercise routine that can help boost your energy and diminish your reliance on caffeine in the mornings. The author suggested that by adding a 30 second stretch to your daily morning routine, that after a few days your muscles will become more limber. This reduces strain on your back and improves posture. The key to success, he claims, is to do the exercises the minute, the very minute you get out of bed in the morning. Here are the basic steps:

  1. Reach down and touch your toes (if possible). Hold for 10 seconds.
  2. Slowly slide back up and rotate at the hips, left and right, for 10 seconds.
  3. Lift your hands over your head, reaching for the ceiling: then lean right with your arms still stretched out, and then lean to the left. Hold the stretch for about 10seconds on each side. 

This sounds very simple and possibly too good to be true, but, according to him, it makes medical sense. Stretching promotes blood flow and greases the joints. If you hold each stretch for 10 seconds, and breathe normally, you activate the parasympathetic nervous system, calming your body and helping to relieve stress. Mr. Steen writes that if you do these stretches consistently, and make them part of your morning routine, you’ll find your body naturally charges itself with energy.

I’m not a physician, so I can’t attest to the medical validity of these claims, but doesn’t everyone have 30 seconds in the morning to give it a try? What have you got to lose?

Any natural boost of energy that gets you through your morning chores, your emails, texts, and other correspondence and prepares you for the day ahead, (without relying on coffee or Diet Coke), has to be a plus. I, for one, am going to give it a try tomorrow morning. But I make no promises about touching my toes. Reaching my kneecaps may be the best I can do. However, it’s a start.

Until my next inspiration…ciao.

Stretching Photo by Chalo Garcia on Unsplash

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