As I’ve got older, stretches have increasingly had to become a large part of my routine. Getting old isn’t fun right? I’m only 27 as of writing this, but I’ve quickly learnt if I don’t stay on top of doing my stretches and foam rolling etc. I stiffen up like a board. This comes with a higher chance that I’ll get injured. If I could only pick five stretches to do for the rest of my life, these are the ones I’d go with. Chances are high they’ll also benefit you greatly too. I believe these stretches prove the most “bang for buck” in terms of recovery, injury prevention and posture improvement.
Are you ready for the five stretches that improved my life? Here we go.
Modified Hip Flexor
Of all the leg stretches this is a winner. This is fantastic for capturing the tissues of the anterior hip. An area that gets really glued up if you spend a large percentage of your day sitting on your bum. So if you work at a desk or drive a lot this is a must for you. It’s useful for squatting mechanics and preventing lower back pain. Spend 2-3 minutes per side. You can also vary the difficulty depending on how tight you get your knee to the wall.
Tightness through the front of the abdomen will drag you forward creating a hunched posture. Opening the abs and spine like this will improve posture, breathing and back pain. Spend 1 minute in this position.
Tight, short glutes can be a real pain in the butt. Get it? Ahhh. Anyway if you’re tight in the glutes it can have a negative impact on the way they contract and function during movements. This can cause issues with the lower back and knees. It’s also important for external rotation of the hip. Spend 1-2 minutes per side.
Door Frame Chest
Another fantastic one for posture. This stretch will help the shoulders sit back into a better position. Again you can guarantee you’re tight here if your day involves lots of siting down, typing on a computer or driving. Spend 1-2 minutes per side.
Trap And Neck
We all live busy stressful lives. As a result we tend to carry lots of tension in the neck and shoulders and get neck pain and headaches. This is a great stretch to help relieve symptoms. Obviously stress management is also important. Spend 1-2 minutes per side.
So there you have it. There’s the five stretches. You don’t have to do each one every day, but aim to get through the list at least once per week for a better you.