Good Form: Chest-opening pose relieves stress

Good Form

This gentle chest-opening pose can be adjusted to accommodate your level of flexibility. With regular practice, this pose becomes quite enjoyable and gives you a chance to reconnect with yourself while releasing tension and tightness in your chest.

Lie down on a level surface with a support bolster or rolled towel under the bottom of your shoulder blades and a yoga block beneath your head. Extend your arms to the sides and bend your elbows so that your hands are on either side of your head. Place your feet flat on the floor with your knees bent to the ceiling. You should feel a soft stretch across your chest. Relax in this position for 1 to 2 minutes.

As you become more comfortable with this stretch, begin to slide your legs out directly in front of you. Keep the bolster behind your shoulder blades but remove the yoga block and place your hands behind your head for a slightly deeper stretch. Relax and breathe in this position for 1 to 2 minutes.

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

karen@karenvoight.com

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