Have you been sitting at your desk, driving all day, or flying across the country? These low-key recovery moves are terrific ways to open up your body and relieve tightness to your muscles after long hours of sitting. Try these four moves to open up your hips, thoracic spine and shoulders. All you need is your body and a yoga block.
- Begin kneeling on your right knee with your left knee bent in front of you and your left foot flat on the floor. Both knees start at 90 degrees.
- Place the yoga block under your left foot lengthwise so it elevates your forward foot a few inches off the ground.
- Tuck your pelvis and lean forward into your left leg to feel a stretch in your left hip flexor. Hold onto your left knee for support.
- Release and switch sides.
Expansive Thoracic Breath Opener
- Lie on your back. Place the yoga block under your thoracic spine.
- Bring the bottoms of your feet to touch, and let your knees drop out and down to the floor for a butterfly stretch.
- Breathe into this back bend and let your chest open.
Windshield Wipers With Block
- Lie on your back, arms out at your sides to form a T.
- Bend your knees to 90 degrees, stacking them over your hips, and squeeze the yoga block between your knees.
- Let your knees fall to the right, twisting through your lower torso.
- Reverse the move and then drop them to the left. Repeat.
- Begin kneeling, toes turned under, and sit back on your heels.
- Place two yoga blocks on the first or second height by each foot and put your hands on the blocks.
- Roll your shoulders back and squeeze your shoulder blades together.
- Start with one hand on a block and the other hand on your hip.
- Pull your chin into your chest as you push down into your hands and feet, and come into a Half Camel Pose with one hand on the block and the other free arm reaching up above your shoulder.
- Drive your hips forward, chest up, and allow your head to extend back.
- Sit your hips back to release. Repeat on other side.
Photo credit: zeljkosantrac, Getty Images
GIFs: Tom Casey, box24studio.com
Model: Erica Johnson, 24 Hour Fitness