In our last post, we talked about the importance of firing up the stabilizing muscles in the back of your body both for general postural improvements, and to prepare your body for intense exercise.
However, activating your muscles is just part of the picture – learning to help these muscles relax and recover is also really important. In the video below, you’ll see a few stretches that will help you learn to relax muscles in the back of your body, from the back of the shoulders and thoracic spine (upper back) to the lower back and hamstrings.
If you’re feeling a little stiff and sore from sitting down too much or from yesterday’s session, these stretches may be what you’re looking for. Remember that there’s never a need to stretch fast, or to push beyond what you’re comfortable with. Ease into each position slowly, and above all else, prioritize perfect alignment. If you have any doubts at all, talk to a coach before trying the stretch.
Hold each stretch for up to a minute, or 15-20 deep breaths. As a general rule, try to breathe deeply, slowly, and constantly while stretching. If you find yourself holding your breath, it’s generally a sign that you need to back off a little bit and reduce the tension of the stretch.
The Ritual Team