Health & Fitness

With a twist, you can release tension

Try seated stretches like this one on a rolled mat to give you an added lift and to help you achieve a more intense twist in your torso. It's an excellent way to release any tension accumulated in your middle and lower back muscles. Make sure you use a tightly rolled mat and sit with your buttock bones directly on top of it. Also, breathe fully while holding the twist because it's easy to hold your breath and not be aware of it.

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— Karen Voight

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1 Sit upright on a rolled yoga mat. Bend your right knee, bringing your foot on the floor close to your right buttock. Straighten your left leg out in front of you with your left toes pointed up. Press out firmly through your left heel. Hold your right knee vertical as you inhale and lengthen your spine.

2 On an exhale, rotate your torso toward your right bent leg, hugging your leg with your left arm. Bring your right arm back, and continue lifting your torso upright. Press your left arm and right knee against each other to bring the left side of your torso forward to create a deeper twist. Hold for 20 to 30 seconds, breathing fully. Return to center and repeat by twisting to the other side.


Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times
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