Have you ever thought about starting a stretch routine? There are many benefits to stretching that will positively influence your dance technique and ability. To get started, it’s as easy as allocating 10 minutes every evening before bed to create a healthy habit for your muscles.
Try these 4 stretches before bed!
1.) Pigeon Pose
This yogi favorite is a great hip opener with a variety of benefits. These benefits include…
- Relieves sciatic and back pain
- Decreases stress
- Opens up your knees
- Encourages hip mobility
*JJTip! When perfecting your pigeon pose, aim to get your shin parallel to the top of your mat for maximum stretch. Focus on keeping your hips square and untuck your back toes.
2.) Snow Angel Stretch
For mobility in your upper back, snow angels will provide stretch across your shoulders, chest and back. You can do this stretch using a variety of methods, including against a wall, across a foam roller or even on the floor.
Here are some cues to think about that will perfect your port de bra!
- For full range of motion, send your arms straight over head and tuck your elbows back down into your sides.
- Exhale your ribs in to avoid splaying.
- Engage your core by dropping your mid-back down into the roller, wall or floor.
3.) Seated Straddle Stretch
Middle splits, anyone? Incorporating your middle split into your bedtime stretch routine is the first step to achieve that 180 degree line. Here are some things to think about when sitting in a straddle stretch:
- Bend and stretch your knees to deepen the stretch in the hamstrings.
- Inhale and press your upper body forward as you exhale.
- Keep your core actively engaged.
4.) Wall Roll Downs
Wall roll downs are a great way to release tension in your spine after a day of dancing. Simply stand up against a wall, feet hip distance apart. Begin by tucking your chin and rolling down through your spine vertebra by vertebra. The key here is to go slow! Take your time rolling down until your hands touch the floor.
Begin to roll back up through the spine — initiate this movement by tucking the pelvis under and sending your body back upwards at a slow, steady pace. When you stand up, you may notice a sensation of feeling taller, lighter and more aligned!
It takes 21 days to build a habit.
Practice this stretch routine before you sleep and watch how it benefits your flexibility… literally overnight!