Health & FitnessFitness & Nutrition

Good Form: A good stretch for after a long sit


Here's a great stretch that you can do any time to release tension in your back, chest and shoulders. It is excellent to do after prolonged periods of sitting at a desk, in a car or in an airplane.

Kneel on a padded, flat surface or on a yoga mat with your knees hip-width apart and directly below your hips. Place the palm of your left hand directly below your left shoulder and place your right hand slightly in front of your right shoulder. Be sure you don't sit backward toward your heels: Your hips should remain above your knees for the entire stretch.

Shift weight onto your right hand as you slide your left arm straight between your right hand and right knee, palm facing up. Continue sliding your left arm all the way through until you can rest the side of your head on the floor. For a deeper stretch, try to roll toward the back of your head and left shoulder. Pause in this position for three to six breaths. To come out of the stretch, slowly shift weight onto your right hand again as you gently return your torso to the start position. Change your hand position and repeat on the other side. (This time you'll slide your right hand through to the left.)

Voight is the creator of a line of fitness DVDs, including "Full Body Stretch" and "Ballet BodySculpt."

Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times
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