This is a mobility “work in.” When you have a tough day (mentally, physically or both), it may be best to “work in” instead of working out. The first drill is designed to lower your sympathetic (fight or flight) nervous system. There’s no need for a warm-up, as each exercise is designed to slowly improve space in your joints.
- Perform each movement for three rounds of 60 seconds.
- For bilateral movements, you’ll simply pause after each round before performing the next.
- For unilateral movements, work each side for 60 seconds to complete one round.
- Lie on your stomach in a prone position.
- Place your arms under your forehead for comfort.
- Relax and take deep belly breaths.
- Stand with your feet under your hips.
- With light fists, quickly tap your legs to stimulate circulation and wake up the tissues.
- Balance on one leg and reach down. Start at each ankle and tap your legs, moving up the sides of your legs and to the front and then to the back of your legs.
- Do the other side. Lean over slightly and reach around to do your lower back, then use your opposite hand to tap your opposite shoulder and down your arm and back up.
- Then do the opposite side and finish with a light tap on your head.
- Sit cross-legged.
- Bring your left arm overhead and toward your right side to stretch the left side of your body.
- Release and repeat on the opposite side.
- Sit comfortably and hold your right shin with two hands just above your ankle.
- Roll your right ankle seven times in each direction.
- Place that foot on the ground and switch legs.
- Stand with your feet wider than your shoulders.
- Sit your hips back and down to come into a low squat.
- At the bottom, place your right hand on the ground in front of you and rotate to open up your chest to the ceiling, bringing your left hand directly above you to form one long line.
- Rotate back down and press through your heels to stand. Repeat the squat and rotate to the other side at the bottom.
- Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart.
- Interlace your fingers, flip your palms out and drive your hands forward as you hinge forward from your hips.
- Bring your torso parallel to the floor and press your hands away from you.
- Repeat this movement.
- Begin kneeling with your knees under your hips.
- Bring your right foot through and in front of you, leg straight and toes flexed to the ceiling.
- Lean forward to stretch the back of your front leg, and keep hands on the floor on either side of your leg for balance.
- Plant your front foot on the ground and shift your hips forward for a hip-flexor stretch, spine rounded over your front leg.
- Press your hips forward and shift forward, bending your knee even more for a deeper stretch to the Achilles and soleus.
- Place your hands on either side of your front foot, tuck your back toes and bring your back knee off the ground to straighten your back leg.
- Hold here, then keep your left hand on the ground and rotate your chest to open up toward your front leg, bringing your right hand to the ceiling.
- Come to plank position and switch sides.
Photo credit: fizkes, Getty Images
GIFs: Tom Casey, box24studio.com
Model: Rory Santos, 24 Hour Fitness