Simple Stretches For Mobility & Flexibility
The older we get, the more our mobility and flexibility start to decline. That’s why it is so important to incorporate stretches, even simple ones, into our daily routine while we still can.
Below we have listed some stretches that you can do in less than 5 minutes. These stretches focus on the larger muscle groups, as focusing on the smaller muscles and tendons usually takes a little longer to get fully stretched.
If you are interested in improving your posture, increasing your blood flow, reducing your risk of injury, and improving your mobility and flexibility, then keep reading below!
The Low Lunge (Modified)
This beginner stretch will open up your hip flexors, alleviating tightness and tension in the lower back and the front of the hips.
How To ‘Low Lunge’:
- Step your left foot forward and your right foot back, keeping your feet as wide as your hips.
- Lower down onto your right knee, making sure that your left knee is over your left ankle.
- Put your hands on either side of your left foot, breathing in through the nose and out through the mouth, slowly.
- Hold this pose for five slow and mindful breaths.
- Switch legs.
Quad Muscle Stretch
You can do this stretch directly from the low lunge stretch position or from a standing position. This stretch once again opens the hip flexors and can alleviate tightness. It will also give your glutes and quads a deep and satisfying stretch.
How To ‘Quad Muscle Stretch’:
- From the low lunge, when your left knee is on the ground and your left foot is forward, slowly twist to the left and reach for your right toes with your left hand.
- If you can reach, pull your right toes towards your right glute to feet a stretch in your right quad. If you are unable to do this, do not worry! Instead, try moving into the standing quad stretch.
How To ‘Standing Quad Stretch’:
- While standing, simply bend your right knee and reach your right hand back towards your right foot.
- Pull your right foot towards your glute, and keep your right knee reaching towards the midline of the body.
- You will feel a nice stretch in your right quad. Hold this for 5 seconds.
- Repeat on the other side.
If you work an office job, it’s possible you suffer from tight butt muscles from sitting for long periods of time. This is why daily stretching is so important, it will keep your lower body limber and loose.
How To ‘Glute Stretch’:
- In order to stretch these muscles, you can either stand or sit.
- Cross your left ankle over your right thigh and sink down slowly until you feel a nice stretch in the left glute.
- Hold this for 5 seconds, making sure you’re flexing your left foot to protect the left knee.
- Repeat on the other side.
The muscles in the backs of our legs can become shortened due to sitting and a sedentary lifestyle. This can make it different to perform simple tasks such as bending down. Stretching these muscles is incredibly important, but often overlooked.
How To ‘Hamstring Stretch’:
- Stand up and bend forward at the waist.
- Reach your arms down towards the ground and allow them to flop down as if they are made of noodles.
- Bend one knee, then the other, all while breathing in and out through your nose.
- Hold this for 5 seconds.
- You can also sway your arms to the right and the left to deepen the stretch.
- When you come back up to standing, slowly roll up the spine one vertebra at a time.
Standing Side Stretch
This is one of my favourite stretches as not only does it allow more room for our internal organs, it also just feels really good on your muscles – especially if you are sitting at a desk chair all day with poor posture.
How To ‘Standing Side Stretch’:
- While standing, reach your arms up through the ceiling, keeping your feet firmly planted on the floor, parallel with one another.
- Clasp your hands together at the top and lean over towards the right to stretch the left side of your body.
- Keep your shoulders relaxed, and pull your belly button in towards the spine to support the lower back.
- Hold this for 5 seconds, then come up through the centre and repeat on the other side.
Always ensure to stretch with safety and care. You should be particularly careful and cautious if you have any health concerns or injuries, and it is best to speak with your doctor first before beginning any new type of strenuous exercise. Read our blog about ‘stretches to improve sleep’ here.