Whether you’re an early riser or you like to sleep in a bit, morning stretching should be part of your daily routine. These gentle movements provide an easy transition from the comfort of your bed to tackling the day ahead.
Stretching in the morning offers several important benefits. The movements help improve circulation and get your blood flowing, which helps your body wake up. Many people find that stretching makes them feel energized and gives them a boost of confidence. They also may help set a calm tone for the day so you feel better prepared.
Morning yoga stretches to try
Some of the best morning stretches are yoga poses. You can do these on a towel or yoga mat on the floor.
Get your spinal fluid moving and massage your abdominal organs with this easy-to-perform pose.
Position your body on all fours with your shoulders directly over your wrists and hips above your knees. Take a deep breath. As you exhale, round your back and let your head and glutes roll down. As you inhale, roll your head and glutes up until you have an arched back. Alternate the movements for 30 seconds.
- Child’s pose
Child’s pose is great for stretching your hips, pelvis, thighs and spine. Kneel on the floor with your knees apart and toes together. Rest the palms of your hands on your thighs and breathe in. As you breathe out, lower your upper body until your head touches the floor. Extend your arms and place your palms on the floor past your head. Stay in the pose for at least three breaths.
This pose stretches your torso and chest. Lie on the yoga mat face down. Position your hands under your shoulders with your palms down on the mat. Lift your head, shoulders and chest as you press your palms against the mat. Be careful to not overstrain your lower back while enjoying this stretch.
Morning stretches in bed
You may find it helpful to stretch while you’re still in bed, especially if you like to linger after the alarm goes off. Try these morning stretches for flexibility that don’t require standing.
- Full body stretch
You can do this stretch with or without a resistance band or towel. Lie face-up on your bed with your legs slightly apart. Grab the ends of a resistance band or towel and hold it above your head. Lift the band up toward the ceiling and move it over your head and torso toward the bed.
- Hamstring stretch with band
This stretch works your hamstrings, which are the muscles in the back of your upper legs. Use a towel or belt if you don’t have a resistance band handy. Lie on the bed facing the ceiling with your feet extended. Wrap a strap around your left foot. Keep your right leg extended as you lift the left foot toward the ceiling. Straighten the left as much as possible using the strap to help you deepen the stretch. Repeat on the other side.
- Side-lying quadriceps
To stretch the front side of your legs, roll over to your right side with your legs extended. Bend your left knee, reaching toward your glutes. Grasp your left foot to stretch the thigh. Roll over to your left side and repeat the steps.
- Single knee pull
Loosen your tight back, glutes and hamstrings with this simple stretch. Extend your legs and bend your left knee. Holding your left thigh with your hand, gently pull your knee toward your chest. Return your leg to bed and repeat on the other side.
Moving your body is an important part of a healthy lifestyle. Learn about some other easy ways to add more movement during your day.
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