Sleep is one of the body essentials. You need to have a good night sleep to rejuvenate your bodily functions after a busy day. Sometimes, it becomes hard to get enough sleep as a result of anxiety, among other factors. Consider using the following stretching exercises to help you sleep better at night.
- Happy baby.
- Resting body.
- Lizard pose.
- Legs on the wall.
- Standing forward fold.
- Sitting forward fold.
- The falling star.
- Sleepy child.
- Hero’s rest.
- Figure four.
These stretching exercises apply as follows:
- Happy baby
It involves laying on your back on a mat or pad then lifting your legs and holding them with your hands as a baby does.
Pull your legs gently until you feel your back stretch.
Maintain the position for about 15 seconds before letting go.
This exercise works on your hips, your spine and your inner groin. It relieves the muscles around these areas, making you relax after a tedious day.
- Resting body
You rest your body by laying on your back with your legs slightly open. Your hands rest beside your body and your palms rest looking up.
Make sure that you stretch your arms and legs.
Close your eyes and at this point, do not think about anything. Rather, forget everything, and before you know it, you are likely to find yourself sleeping.
This exercise focuses on the mind. It helps the brain to relax when other organs are relaxing.
- Lizard Pose
As the name suggests, this exercise leaves you resting like a lizard.
Step out your right leg parallel to your right hand. Bend your left knee to make your thigh parallel to the floor.
Stretch your left toes outside and keep off your right heel from the floor. Stretch your arms with elbows resting on the floor.
Work on your neck to fall in line with your spine.
This pose helps relax the hamstrings, quadriceps and the hip flexors. It works best for those people who work behind the desk.
- Legs on the wall
This stretching exercise involves resting on your back and lifting your legs up, then rest them on the wall. Your legs remain perpendicular to the floor. This exercise aims to reduce sore feet. Raising your legs up helps in the flow of blood to and from the feet. It works well on your legs especially if you spend your days having long hours of standing or sitting.
- Standing forward fold
Stand straight, feet about six feet apart and lean your upper body forward. Do not bend your knees as you lean. You can involve your hands by trying to touch the floor or the back of your ankles.
This exercise works on your spine and head, making it release tension and pain. The activity also promotes the supply of oxygen in the brain by allowing good circulation of blood in the head.
- Sitting forward fold
This fold involves sitting upright and stretching your legs.
Lift your hands above your head and lean your body forward from the hip up. Try touching your toes with your hands without lifting up your knees.
It is not a must that you touch your toes. The exercise helps you in maximizing your stretch while working on your back, calves, and hamstrings.
- The falling star
Rise your sitting position from the ground using a pillow or two. Bring your feet together as if you are clapping them. Your chest should lean forward and curve your spine. Then, let your eyes focus on your feet as you maintain the position.
The falling star works on your lower back to relieve tension. Our lower backs carry most of our body weight when we sit. Since we frequently sit during the day, it is essential to prepare our backs for the following day’s task. This simple stretching exercise would greatly serve that purpose.
- Sleepy child
This exercise imitates a sleeping child on a cot. To achieve it, lay while facing down. Fold your knees from the inside as if kneeling with your face still facing down. Bring your toes together as if clutching them.
Now stretch your arms and rest your elbows on the floor. Make sure you reach your arms as far as you can. You can turn your head sideways, maintaining the posture of your general body.
This position works on your ribs, back, the sides of your chest, fingers, toes and your shoulders. It is one of the most effective exercises as it works on several body parts at a go. It makes you sleep like a child.
- Hero’s rest
This is quite an uncomfortable stretching exercise. It involves tucking your feet and sitting on your calves. However, you can make it a bit comfortable by adding a pillow. Your chest should remain upright, and your palms should rest on your knees. When you are set, take ten slow breathes while closing your eyes.
This stretch works on your front thighs and mind, allowing them to relax and ready to work.
- Figure four
Lay on your back and lift your legs towards the roof. Bend your right leg’s knee and use your hands to hug your left leg towards your chest. Make sure your left leg is stretching straight towards the roof as high as you can when you bend your right leg.
Exchange the legs simultaneously several times.
This exercise works on your glutes which are the body parts that contain most muscles. It helps in reducing stiffness on them to allow you to have maximum comfort.
For you to be able to improve your daily productivity, you should relax your body before performing your next tasks. You can find motivation by joining groups where people meet for stretching exercises. Such groups can help you to adhere to your schedule if you intend to follow one. It is wise to carry out these exercises especially in a society that demands a lot of formal engagement from us, leaving little or no time for our recreation.