For the month of March we will be focusing on twisting the spine! Twisting is extremely healthy for the body. Benefits include: helps to improve digestion, strengthens and stretches the spine, helps to reduce back pain, and twisting aids in detoxing the organs, just to name a few!
The first week is a very simple twist called easy seated twist. You will possibly need a blanket or pillow to sit on, or a chair if the floor is not accessible to you.
How to do the Easy Seated Twist:
- As the name implies this is a pretty easy stretch. Find a space on the floor and take a seat. You can cross the ankles, or place one foot in front of the other as shown in photo 1.
- If your knees are very high and coming towards the chest, you can sit on the edge of a folded blanket or a firm pillow. Try to keep your knees closer to the floor.
- Sit tall reaching the crown of the head towards the ceiling. Take a deep inhale continuing to lengthen the spine towards the ceiling and as you exhale turn to the right placing the back of the left hand on the outside of the right thigh, close to the knee.
- The right-hand comes directly behind the right hip, palm down, as shown in photo 2.
- If it is difficult for you to get all the way down to the floor you can do this in a chair as shown in the left photo below. Preferably use a chair that has no arms. If it does have arms, you can sneak the legs through the armholes, if they are big enough, as I’ve done in the photo below.
- Sit with your right hip facing the back of the chair, and make sure your feet touch the ground.
- Take a deep inhale, lengthen the crown of the head towards the ceiling and as you exhale twist towards the back of the chair, placing your hands on the top of the back of the chair. Try to keep the knees together and even as you twist, that keeps the pelvis inline.
- The twist should happen from the mid to upper back.
- Whether you are sitting on the floor or sitting in a chair, with every inhale reach the spine towards the ceiling, and every exhale pull the belly in and up and see if you can twist a little deeper.
- Stay here for a minimum of 30 seconds. The longer you stay in a twist the more heated the body becomes so you may notice you start to sweat if you stay here for a long time. You can go back and forth between the sides a couple times if you like.
Tip: This is a great one to do if you work at a desk all day, so take a break and take a twist!
Check out all our weekly stretches here and email me if you have any questions! Rlackowski@athletico.com