If you work as a waiter, hair stylist, sales clerk, stocker or other job that requires you to be on your feet all day, you know how tired your feet and leg muscles get from just one shift. Try this yoga routine to stretch and help those muscles recover at the end of the day.
Fifteen minutes is all it takes to do this routine, and once you're finished you'll feel refreshed for your next shift, or better yet, for your actual life off the job. Here are the areas this routine focuses on.
- Joints: Standing and sitting stretches for your wrists, ankles and hips. Essentially bending your wrists or ankles back gently to stretch in the opposite direction they're normally in.
- Back: Elongate the spine with forward folds and shoulder stretches to open up your upper back. These two poses use your body weight to slowly stretch your upper back and shoulders. For the forward folds, bend your knees and put your feet hips width apart, fold forward and grab your elbows. Gently move your head back and forth, then slowly move your arms and torso back and forth to stretch your upper back and shoulders.
- Legs: Stretch your hamstrings and leg muscles by putting your feet a little more than shoulder distance apart, straighten your legs if you can. Put your hands on your waist and slowly bend forward. Go slowly so you don't lose your balance. Once you reach a 90 degree bend, place your fingertips on the ground, your palms if you can, and bend and straighten your elbows to stretch more and less. Walk your hands back in between your legs for more of a stretch. Return your hands to your waist and slowly rise up to a standing position.
- Neck: Neck rolls and forward bends to move your neck muscles in a different direction.
The routine is designed to be helpful and short, but if you're particularly tired, have sore legs, or maybe your joints really bother you, just add a few reps of the exercises above to work that part out a little more. For the full routine, check out the video above.
Yoga for the Service Industry [Yoga with Adriene]