Start your day with this energizing, 10-Minute Morning Stretch Routine! Increase mobility, reduce low back pain, open tight hips, speed up muscle recovery and reduce your risk of injury.
Mobility and recovery are really important to me. That’s why I’ve started doing this 10-Minute Morning Stretch Routine daily (and I can already feel the difference!).
When you’re training like an athlete, you need to be recovering like an athlete. That means including dedicated mobility and recovery sessions to improve your workouts and reduce your risk of injury.
The 7 stretches in today’s mobility routine are designed to gently wake up your body and work out any muscle knots or tight spots that might have settled in overnight.
Whether you’re new to exercise or a seasoned athlete, you can benefit from a regular stretching routine. Here are a few benefits you’ll see from adding 5 to 10 minutes of dynamic and static stretches to your morning routine: increased range of motion, reduced muscle soreness, improved posture, reduced risk of injury and reduced joint pain. Stretching specific muscle groups promotes proper alignment, reduces musculoskeletal pain and improves your overall athletic performance.
Foam rolling improves range of motion, decreases post-exercise soreness, alleviates tightness or trigger points, increases blood flow and flexibility, aids in injury prevention, aids in muscle recovery (reduces inflammation that occurs during the muscle repair process), and increases flexibility without hampering muscle strength (Journal of Sports Rehabilitation). Foam rolling is for everyone, whether you maintain a rigorous fitness routine or sit at a desk all day.
Flexibility isn’t necessarily a predictor of mobility. That said, flexibility and mobility are both important when it comes to your body operating at its optimum capacity. Flexibility is focused on your muscles and mobility is focused on your joints. Flexibility is the ability of a muscle to temporarily stretch when needed. Mobility is the ability of a joint to move through its full range of motion.
The best way to start the day — seven morning stretches!
Whether you sit at a desk all day, are a fitness beginner or a fitness enthusiast, you can benefit from this 10-Minute Morning Stretch Routine.
This full body mobility routine releases tight muscles, reduces soreness, increases flexibility and mobility and ultimately keeps you moving!
Add these morning stretches to your routine daily (or at a minimum 2-3 times a week).
A foam roller and optional lacrosse ball or tennis ball.
I’ll use a lacrosse ball for 1-2 stretches, but you can sub a tennis ball.
Follow along with the guided Morning Stretch Routine on YouTube, led by certified personal trainer, Lindsey Bomgren.
Your Workout Looks Like This:
Stretches: Upper back and shoulders.
A lot of people tend to carry their stress in the upper back and shoulder area. This is a great way to work out knots, kinks or tightness in your upper back and shoulders.
Stretches: The lower anterior chain (front side of the body) — hips, hip flexors, groin and quads.
This is personally where I spend the most time foam rolling. I have really tight hips and hip flexors, so I’ll spend a few breaths slowly shifting back and forth on the foam roller to open the hips. If you have tight hips, you might also try these 5 Hip Flexor Stretches.
Do you have knee pain? Foam roll your hips and quads. There are four quadriceps muscles and they all attach to the knee cap. Foam rolling the quads can improve the mobility of the knee (and decrease knee pain) and improve hip mobility.
Stretches: The posterior chain (backside of the body) — low back, upper back, and thoracic spine (from tailbone to neck).
You should feel a stretch along your spine as you lengthen from tailbone to fingertips. This stretch is also great for opening the hips.
Stretches: Hips (targeting your hip flexors, which are the muscles in the front of your hip) and quads. You use these muscles when you pull your knees to your chest.
A great stretch if you sit at a desk all day and have tight hip flexors.
Stretches: Inner thighs (adductors), hips, glutes, shoulders and chest.
Note: you can straighten your leg for an additional hamstring stretch.
Stretches: All the muscles in your neck that support your head and upper spine — targeting the neck and upper trapezius muscles.
If you get tight, hunched shoulders when you’re stressed, this stretch is for you.
Stretches: Scapular muscles — upper back and shoulder muscles and shoulder blades.
Using a lacrosse ball for self-myofascial release (aka, self-massage), can help break up the connective tissue surrounding your muscles that can get rigid from prolonged sitting, poor posture, or exercising.
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