Something as simple as stretching a little can have many benefits. We often stretch naturally when we wake up or are feeling tired. And not just us - who hasn't seen dogs, cats and other animals stretch every so often?
The many benefits of stretching include decreasing muscle stiffness and muscular tension, increasing range of motion and muscular relaxation, improving posture, reducing and managing stress, and promoting circulation. And you don't have to do a 90-minute yoga class to reap some of these benefits (although a 90-minute yoga class also comes highly recommended!). A little stretching here and there throughout the day can also work wonders, even if it's just a little shoulder stretch.
So, whether you're sat in front of your computer or on the bus or anywhere for that matter, why not take a couple of minutes now and try the following exercise?
Find a comfortable seated position and focus on your shoulders.
On your next inhale draw your shoulders as far as possible up towards your ears, hold your breath for a count of 8, and then quickly exhale and drop your shoulders at the same time.
Inhale and exhale normally.
Then repeat 4 more times, breathing normally in between each round.
It's as simple as that!
If you spend a lot of time in front of a computer and/or sitting by a desk, you might want to do this exercise a few times throughout the day. It can work wonders for your shoulders and overall well-being.