Stretching Your Way Out Of Bed

20 January 2014

Ring-Ringgg! Ugh! It's alarm o'clock. You know what that means. That's right, it's time for you to wake up from that awesome dream and start a new day! But it's another chance to start the day right. Here's how: stretch your way out of bed.

I've always said that humans should learn a lot from animals as they are naturally and consistently at one with nature and their biological needs - it's instinct for them. Perhaps you've got a a cat or dog? Have you ever seen what they do after a good siesta? STRETCH!

Stretching is necessary not only before and after physical exercise, but perhaps especially first thing in the morning as part of your wakeup ritual. And if you've had a hard day, be sure to stretch before going to sleep. Trust me, you'll rest much better.

You don't need a lot of time to do this routine, only about 5 minutes of your morning will ensure you get a good start, free from stiffness and muscle pain.

But why is stretching so good for you? During sleep, your body can sometimes go many hours with little movement. The horizontal position of rest can lead to numbness and stiffness of muscles as well as poor posture. This makes your muscles tense and accustomed to this behaviour.

Light stretching is the best way to brush off the cobwebs and ease yourself into the day's activities. This is an easy stretching routine - you probably did it every day when you were a kid: stretch your arms and legs, also your back and shoulders, breathing deeply to oxygenate the brain.

If you want to extend it slightly and make a more complex stretching routine, you could add in some "sun salutations." With this stretch you can gently stretch all your key muscles without overdoing it. After stretching, wash your face with cold water and start the day with a smile and positive attitude. Easy peasy right?

Bonus: A little stretching every day could lead to some slight "growth." You could gain 1 or 2 centimetres in height! Need we say more?