Your body adapts to the postures you spend the most time in. If a typical day includes hunching over a laptop and then spending time on the couch in the evenings, then you’re not alone. A big % of urban working adults follow the same routine. It’s no surprise our natural posture has become increasingly slumped and curved.
While there are many exercises you can do to improve your posture and flexibility, using the right equipmentwill help you make the most of your stretching routine. The equipment discussed in this article can be easily purchased and used at home and will help you keep proper form and maximize your body's ability to stretch.
Here are some basic equipment items for your mobility routine.
1. Seated Forward Fold - allows you to practice proper alignment by preventing your back from allowing, therefore allowing for a deeper stretch in your hamstrings.
2. Reclined Big Toe - gives your arms extra length instead of having to hang onto your leg or foot with your hands, which could cause your back to round or your leg to bend.
3. Bow - Using a strap in Bow gives your arms extra length if you do not yet have enough flexibility to fully reach back towards your feet due to lack of range of motion in the shoulder or chest area. It also makes the backbend much milder and allows your body to gently advance into the bend.
4. Bound Angle - Using a strap in Bound Angle engages proper alignment by supporting your lower back and also pulls your feet in towards your body, promoting a deeper hip stretch.
5. Seated Side Stretch - Using a strap in Seated Side Stretch forces your shoulders and chest to open instead of collapsing forward. You can begin to walk your hands in towards each other for a deeper stretch.
6. Legs Up the Wall - Using a yoga strap supports your thighs and keeps them from fall down to the sides, which can be very uncomfortable if you have tight hips. This allows you to completely relax your body into the pose and obtain the full benefits.
7. Boat - Using a yoga strap provides your body with minimal support to balance, while still challenging your core strength. It also promotes proper posture by forcing you to lift through your chest.
8. Warrior II - Using a yoga strap in Warrior II guides your arms to be level with your shoulders and extend straight out. It also supports them in this position, as many people have an issue with their arms getting tired easily when first beginning their yoga practice.
9. Cow Face Arms - Using a strap provides a tool to allow your hands to “connect” and the ability to slowly advance further, testing your limits. This is a great way to release tightness in the shoulders.
10. King Pigeon - This pose requires length and proper alignment. Your yoga strap can give your arm's length while also promoting proper alignment in your hips by keeping them square. This allows you to feel out the pose to see how deep you can go to bringing your foot and hands towards each other."
Using props like yoga blocks is a very effective way to work on your flexibility. Yoga blocks can help flexibility in 2 ways: they can create extra length to help you deepen a pose and they also help in lifting the floor closer to you.
1. Forward fold - For forward fold, you work on your hamstring flexibility, so placing a yoga block on the legs (any which way works for you is fine - it can be vertical or horizontal) may help. Rest your head on the block and with each exhale, visualize your stomach coming down toward your thighs. Try to stay here for 5 - 7 breaths (or more, if you can).
2. Janu Sirsasana A - This is forward folded but with one leg bent, and it works on the hamstrings, the inner thigh, and hips as well. So, the same idea. Place the yoga block on the floor this time, any way that works for you, and rest the head. With each exhale, visualize your stomach coming toward your thighs, visualize the shoulders and hips even. Breathe fully here for 5 - 7 breaths or more.
3. Lizard pose - Lizard pose is a hip opener and can be super tough for people with tight hips and a block sort of raises the floor so you can spend some time. Place the block any way that works for you, and bring the forearms down to the block. With each exhale, visualize any tension you're feeling released. Breathe 5 - 7 breaths or longer.
4. Wide leg forward folds - Good one for the hamstrings. Bring your head down and rest here, breathing into the backs of the legs. Visualize the hip joints in line with the ankles and hold here for 5 - 7 breaths or more.
Its low resistance is suitable for beginner and intermediate users for upper body and Pilates exercises.
Medium resistance is great for intermediate users as well as for lower body exercises.
High resistance is ideal for advanced users looking for strength training. These bands are mainly used for lower body exercises such as squats.
Resistance bands make workouts more effective without increasing joint impact. The resistance gradually increases throughout an exercise: At the start of the movement, there is minimal tension but then as you tire the resistance increases. Slim your figure and get even more out of your training by varying the intensity of your exercises and playing with the length of the band and your range of motion.
Upper Body - By standing on the Mid of the tube on both the legs Shoulder Press with the help of two handles same way Bicep Curls, By tying mid of the elastic tube on a pole with the two handles Bent over Rows. Banded pushups
Lower Body - Tying mid of the resistance band on pole/ door locking both the legs with the handles Inverse leg raise. Banded lunges.
1) Get on the floor in a lying position by holding both the ends of the band placing one leg on the mid-section of the band you can fold and stretch. It helps increase the range of motion and flexibility on the knee joints.
2) Get in a standing position holding both ends of the band in level with your shoulders. Keeping distance between both the hands in front, stretch away, and release. It will help you increase the mobility of your shoulder joints.
3) Continue on standing position holding both ends of the band. Keep both legs in an attention position and raise both the hands with pressure to increase the strength of your shoulder muscles. You can also do one hand raises with count change for the other hand.
4) Get on the floor in a lying position by holding both the ends of the band keeping both the legs on the mid of the band in 30 degree elevation of your lower body. You can stretch and fold at a time both your legs and hands together.
These three levels of difficulty give you a gentle introduction to your exercises while gradually strengthening your entire body. They are compact, affordable and easy to transport so you can use them anywhere: at home, at the gym, on your travels, etc.
Using the elastic bands increases effectiveness without risking damage to your joints. The resistance increases gradually throughout the exercise. At the start of the movement, there is minimal tension but then as you tire the resistance increases. Slim your figure and get even more out of your training by varying the intensity of your exercises and playing with the length and width of the band
1) These bands come in a loop. Get on the floor in a lying position by keeping both the legs inside. Lock the band around your ankle and stretch each leg sideways and release.
2) Continue in the lying position by keeping both the legs inside. Lock the band around your thighs. Stretch each leg sideways and release. It helps to increase glute muscles.
3) Get in a standing position by keeping both hands inside. Lock the band around your forearm and keep both hands in front of you. Stretch both hands sideways and release the stretch. It helps increase hand mobility
The ability to control your balance and agility is just as important as being strong. It can be essential for intense physical activities such as skiing. In general, good balance helps you perform more efficiently by reducing the risk of injury and optimizing your exercises. Controlling your balance can also prevent falls and sprains and help with stability.
We suggest doing your balance session by placing the balance board on a non-slip surface, such as a rug, to avoid any risk of injury and fall. Initially stand on it with support if you're a beginner and then gradually try to stand without any support and lift both hands sideways to have a good balance on your body.