Stretching can be performed early in the morning, during a break at work, to relieve muscle tension, or at night, at bedtime, to go to sleep more relaxed.
Exercise 1 – Lying on your back
The following stretches should be performed with the person lying on their back on a mattress or comfortable support:
- Position your arms above your head, stretching them while stretching your legs. Keep stretching for 10 seconds and relax;
- Bend one leg and keep the other straight. Then, raise the straight leg, with the help of a towel resting on the foot, in order to make an angle of 45 degrees with the floor or so that the leg is at the height of the other knee. Stay in this position for 10 seconds, relaxing and repeating 5 times. Then, do the exercise with the other leg;
- Still in the same position, bend one leg, holding the knee close to the chest, for 10 seconds. Then, the same exercise should be done with the other leg, repeating 5 times on each one;
- Bend both knees and spread them slowly outwards, rotating your feet so that you can join the soles of your feet, spreading your knees as far apart as possible, and hold for 10 seconds. Relax and repeat 5 times. This position can cause slight discomfort, however, if the person is in pain, he should avoid moving his knees so far;
- Move your feet apart, contract your abdomen, and raise your hips, remaining in this position for 10 seconds. Relax and repeat the exercise 5 times;
- Keep your knees bent, put your hands behind your head, raising it until your shoulders rise from the floor, holding in this position for 10 seconds. Repeat 5 times.
Exercise 2 – Lying on your stomach
The following exercises should be performed with the person lying on their stomach on a mattress or comfortable support:
- Lie on your stomach, resting on your elbows, keeping your back muscles relaxed and your head erect, remaining in this position for 10 seconds. Repeat 5 times;
- Place a pillow under the belly and another under the forehead and contract the buttocks. Raise your right leg and left arm for 10 seconds and then repeat with your left leg and right arm. Repeat the exercise 5 times.
Exercise 3 – Standing
The following exercises should be performed standing up, on a regular floor:
- With your feet shoulder-width apart, place your hands on your hips;
- Slowly rotate your hips to the left, front and right and back and repeat again;
- Then, repeat the movements in the opposite direction, to the right, front, left and back, and repeat again;
- Finally, lower your arms along your body.
These exercises should not be performed by people who have an injury to the lower back or who have recently undergone surgery.
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