Health & Fitness Fitness & Nutrition

Good Form: A way to balance out your back

If one side of your back feels a little tighter than the other, perform this stretch on a regular basis. It's a simple, excellent way to bring flexibility and balance to both sides of your torso.

Start by kneeling on a padded surface or mat. Position a yoga block on the floor just to the right of your body. Place your right foot on the floor with your toes, knee and thigh pointing to the right. Be sure your right heel is lined up across from your left knee. Lift your chest and let your arms hang straight down. Keep your hips forward, below your chest.

Inhale and reach your left arm above your left shoulder. Keeping your hips still, exhale and bend to the right, elongating the entire left side of your torso. Rest your right hand on the yoga block in front of your right leg. Use your right arm to push your right thigh backward as you lean sideways. Hold this position as you reach up with your top hand, breathing fully for three to six breaths. Focus on creating space between each of your ribs on the left side of your waist to intensify the stretch. On an inhale, lower your top hand and bring your torso back to center. Exhale. Repeat on the other side.

Voight is the creator of a line of fitness DVDs, including "Sleek Essentials."

karen@karenvoight.com

Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times
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    Hold this position as you actively reach up with your top hand, breathing fully for three to six breaths.

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