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Stretching for the Serially Inflexible

Preserving flexibility

Who can blame you for being inflexible when you work at a desk for a living? It is hardly an environment that contributes to anything other than a further tightening of muscles and deterioration of joints. That makes it all the more important to be proactive about preserving your flexibility- after all you wouldn't want to cause yourself injury from simple activities like getting out of bed in the morning or bending down to pick up a dropped pen. 

 

Time to start unwinding those tight muscles 

No matter how inflexible you consider yourself, you can start doing something to increase your flexibility today. Start with these simple stretches, which can be performed from anywhere: 

Gentle twist: sitting up straight in your chair, take a deep breath in. Turn your body to the left, looking over your left shoulder and grasping your left knee with your right hand. Hold 5 seconds, then repeat on the other side. 

Upper shoulder stretch: grab a towel or rolled up shirt and place it over your left shoulder. Grab the top of the towel with your right hand and the bottom with your left, reaching behind your back. Create tension on the towel by pulling up with your left hand. Hold 10 seconds, switch position of your hands and repeat.

Chest and shoulder stretch: the simplest of all. Sit up straight, with neck balanced atop the head and squeeze your shoulder blades together to open up the chest cavity and stretch the shoulders. Hold 5 seconds, release and repeat. 

Let's stop taking our range of motion for granted and do something to preserve our flexibility. If we can keep our muscles pliant, we can go a long way toward preventing injury and actually undoing the damage of sitting so much while we work. I promise you, a few minutes of simple stretching per day makes getting older a lot easier! 

Dr. Albert Stabile, D.C. 

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