Stretch Your Way to Better Sleep
Do you lie awake at night feeling frustrated because you cannot sleep? Alternatively, maybe you wake frequently and end up feeling grouchy and tired in the day. If such symptoms of insomnia plague you, it might be worth taking expert advice and partaking in more exercise than you do currently.
Studies reveal that people who find it hard to fall asleep do not usually engage in enough physical activity to promote a healthy night‘s rest. However, people who are physically active on a regular basis tend to enjoy sound sleep. If you have a desk job, chances are you do not have many opportunities to exercise. Maybe, like many people in the modern world, a great deal of your life revolves around laborsaving technology, which helps provide you with more time in which to work. As a result, you might feel tired at the end of the day, but your body has not really had an adequate workout.
Stretching is a great technique to encourage sleep to come your way as it can help you unwind and release stress. At the same time, exercising in the comfort of your home is cost-effective and easy compared to going to a fitness center.
Guide to stretching safely
Carry out a light physical activity before beginning as this will help ease you gently into stretching exercises. If you experience pain, stop the particular exercise you are doing, and moderate your regime so that you are comfortable. At the same time, if you have an injury or health condition, ask your physician to recommend the best type of stretches to suit your needs.
- Lie on your back, bend your knees and place your feet on the floor.
- Extend your arms by your sides, and face the palms of your hands upwards.
- Keeping your arms, the backs of your hands, and your feet on the floor, raise the mid section of your body to form a bridge shape.
- Hold this position for 10 seconds before resting.
- Stand an arm’s length away from a wall.
- Place your left foot behind your right foot.
- Bend your right leg forward gently while keeping your left knee straight.
- Keep your back straight, and your feet on the floor pointing forward.
- Hold for 30 seconds before repeating the exercise with the opposite leg.
Seated side bend
- Sit cross-legged on a cushion.
- Place your right hand on the ground next to your right hip, and bend your elbow a little.
- Extend your left arm up over your head, past your left ear.
- Lean to the right, and hold the position for a count of 10.
- Repeat the stretch with the opposite arm.
Stretching before you go to bed will loosen muscle tightness and help you relax, so that you feel comfortable and are ready for a good night’s sleep. There are many other stretching exercises that you might like to try, including some that target specific areas of your body. However, the bridge, calf stretch, and seated side bend are excellent exercises with which to begin.
References: mayoclinic.com fitness magazine.com