Stretch it out for International Yoga Day
To celebrate International Yoga Day, whether you’re working from home, in the office or are just looking for some simple ways to increase your energy, we’re taking a look at some basic stretches to leave you feeling recharged, revitalised and ready to take on your day. You won’t need any equipment, just simply set aside a few minutes every day to focus on your breath, stretch and feel the tension melt away.
Seated crescent moon
Begin by lifting your arms overhead, connect the palms and interlock your fingers. Gently lean to one side keeping your opposite bum butt cheek on the chair, to feel a deep stretch in your side and lengthening of your spine. Hold for five breaths, then repeat on the other side.
Whilst seated, place one foot onto the other thigh, both knees at a 90-degree angle. Keeping a long neck and shoulders relaxed, with both sitting bones in contact with the chair, take your chest forwards towards the lifted leg until you feel a stretch in your hip and lower spine. Hold for five breaths then repeat on the other side.
Start in the seated position with your feet flat on the floor, hip-width apart and your knees at a 90-degree angle. Pressing down with your heels, lift your buttocks just a few inches off the seat, simultaneously lifting your arms up straight overhead then return to sitting in a smooth controlled motion. Repeat four more times.
Hand and wrist mobiliser
Extend your arms overhead and perform five circles inwards with the wrists then five circles outwards. Follow this by alternately spreading the fingers wide and clenching the fists. Next, place one arm out in front of you, palm facing upwards, use your other hand to pull the fingers down, then turn the hand over and pull the fingers upwards. Repeat on the other side, holding each stretch for five seconds.
Stand half a stride away from your desk, both hands on it. Keeping the arms straight, lean your hips towards the desk, opening the chest as you do so and raising your face to the ceiling, lengthening your spine. Keep the abs lightly engaged to prevent the lower back from sinking. Hold the pose for five breaths.
Whilst seated, place one hand on your opposite thigh and the other on the arm or back of the chair, using this to push against, gently twisting your chest to one side. Hold for five breaths then repeat on the other side.