Posture Alignment Stretches

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Posture Alignment Stretches 2016-10-22T11:34:44+00:00

This page has examples and descriptions of the stretches mentioned in my article Stretches To Correct Your Body’s Posture Alignment

Chair Upper Body Stretch

Sit on the edge of a chair, gripping the back of it.
Straighten your arms, keeping your back straight, and pull your upper body forward so you feel a stretch. Hold for 20-30 seconds.

Chest Stretch On A Stability Ball

Get on your hands and knees next to an exercise ball.
Place your elbows on top of the ball, keeping your arm out to your side. This will be your starting position.
Lower your torso towards the floor, keeping your elbow on top of the ball. Hold the stretch for 20-30 seconds, and repeat with the other arm.

Chin To Chest

Get into a seated position on the floor.
Place both hands at the rear of your head, fingers interlocked, thumbs pointing down and elbows pointing straight ahead.
Slowly pull your head down to your chest. Hold for 20-30 seconds.

Dancer’s Stretch

Sit up on the floor.
Cross your right leg over your left, keeping the knee bent. Your left leg is straight and down on the floor.
Place your left arm on your right leg and your right hand on the floor.
Rotate your upper body to the right, and hold for 10-20 seconds. Switch sides.

Dynamic Chest Stretch

Stand with your hands together, arms extended directly in front of you. This will be your starting position.
Keeping your arms straight, quickly move your arms back as far as possible and back in again, similar to an exaggerated clapping motion.
Repeat 5-10 times, increasing speed as you do so.

Elbows Back Stretch

Stand up straight.
Place both hands on your lower back, fingers pointing downward and elbows out.
Then gently pull your elbows back aiming to touch them together.

Front Deltoid Stretch

Reach your left arm across your body and hold it straight.
With your right hand, grasp your left elbow and pull it across your body towards your chest.

Hamstring Self-Myofascial Release (foam rolling)

In a seated position, extend your legs over a foam roll so that it is position on the back of the upper legs. Place your hands to the side or behind you to help support your weight.
Using your hands, lift your hips off of the floor and shift your weight on the foam roll to one leg. Relax the hamstrings of the leg you are stretching.
Roll over the foam from below the hip to above the back of the knee, pausing at points of tension for 10-30 seconds. Repeat for the other leg.

Hamstring Stretch

Sit on a mat with your right leg extended in front of you and your left leg bent with your foot against your right inner thigh.
Lean forward from your hips and reach for your ankle until you feel a stretch in your hamstring. Hold for 15 seconds, then repeat for your other side.

Hug Knees To Chest

Lie down on your back and pull both knees up to your chest.
Hold your arms under the knees, not over (that would put to much pressure on your knee joints).
Slowly pull the knees toward your shoulders. This also stretches your buttocks muscles.

IT-Band Self-Myofascial Release

Lay on your side, with the bottom leg placed onto a foam roller between the hip and the knee. The other leg can be crossed in front of you.
Place as much of your weight as is tolerable onto your bottom leg; there is no need to keep your bottom leg in contact with the ground.muscles of the leg you are stretching.
Be sure to relax the muscles of the leg you are stretching.
Roll your leg over the foam from you hip to your knee, pausing for 10-30 seconds at points of tension. Repeat with the opposite leg.

IT-Band Stretch

Loop a belt, rope, or band around one of your feet, and swing that leg across your body to the opposite side, keeping the leg extended as you lay on the ground.
Keeping your foot off of the floor, pull on the belt, using the tension to pull the toes up. Hold for 10-20 seconds, and repeat on the other side.

Kneeling Hip Flexor

Kneel on a mat and bring your right knee up so the bottom of your foot is on the floor and extend your left leg out behind you so the top of your foot is on the floor.
Shift your weight forward until you feel a stretch in your hip. Hold for 15 seconds, then repeat for your other side.

Lying Crossover

Lie on your back with your arms extended out to the sides and your legs straight. This will be your starting position.
Lift one leg and cross it over your body, attempting to touch the ground near the opposite hand.
Hold for 15-20 seconds.

Neck Self-Myofascial Release

Using a muscle roller or a rolling pin, place the roller behind your head and against your neck.
Do not place the roller directly against the spine, but turned slightly against the muscles to either side of the spine.
Starting at the top of your neck, slowly roll down the muscles of your neck, pausing at points of tension for 10-30 seconds.

Piriformis Self-Myofascial Release

Sit with your buttocks on top of a foam roll. Bend your knees, and then cross one leg so that the ankle is over the knee.
Shift your weight to the side of the crossed leg, rolling over the buttocks until you feel tension in your upper glute. You may assist the stretch by using one hand to pull the bent knee towards your chest.
Hold this position for 10-30 seconds, and then switch sides.

Quadriceps Self-Myofascial Release

Lay face down on the floor with your weight supported by your hands or forearms. Place a foam roll underneath one leg on the quadriceps, and keep the foot off of the ground.
Make sure to relax the leg as much as possible.
Shifting as much weight onto the leg to be stretched as is tolerable, roll over the foam from above the knee to below the hip.
Hold points of tension for 10-30 seconds. Switch sides.

Quadriceps Stretch

Start off by lying on your right side, with your right knee bent at a 90-degree angle resting on the floor in front of you (this stabilizes the torso).
Bend your left knee behind you and hold your left foot with your left hand, press your left hip forward as you push your left foot back into your hand. Switch sides.

Runner’s Stretch

It’s easiest to get into this stretch if you start standing up, put one leg behind you, and slowly lower your torso down to the floor.
Keep the front heel on the floor (if it lifts up, scoot your other leg further back).
Place your hands on either side of your front leg. Push your butt up toward the ceiling, and then gradually lower it back toward the floor.
Stretch the hip flexor of the back leg and the hamstring and buttocks of the front.

Seated Glute Stretch

Begin seated on the ground with both legs extended.
Bring your right knee up and over your left leg so that your right foot is on the ground. Keep the left leg extended.
Hold your right knee with both hands and pull it into your chest. Hold the stretch for 30 seconds.
Repeat with the opposite leg.

Side Neck Stretch

Start with your shoulders relaxed, gently tilt your head towards your shoulder.
Assist stretch with a gentle pull on the side of the head.

Sternocleidomastoid Stretch

Rotate the head to one side as far as is comfortable
Then tilt the head slightly back, as if trying to reach the ear to the shoulder.
Hold for 20 seconds, rest and stretch the other side.

World’s Greatest Stretch

Begin by lunging forward, with your front foot flat on the ground and on the toes of your back foot.
With your knees bent, squat down until your knee is almost touching the ground.
Keep your torso erect, and hold this position for 10-20 seconds.
Place the arm on the same side as your front leg on the ground, with the elbow next to the foot.
Your other hand should be placed on the ground, parallel to your lead leg, to help support you.
After 10-20 seconds, place your hands on either side of your front foot.
Raise the toes of the front foot off of the ground, and straighten your leg.
You may need to reposition your rear leg to do so.
Hold for 10-20 seconds, and then repeat the entire sequence for the other side.