Stretches for Wellness

Whether you have been spending many hours daily working in front of your laptop, taking care of your children or whipping up those delicious meals, here are 3 stretching exercises [...]
Most of us are aware of the benefits of good posture as well as good ergonomics in the workplace. However, that may not be enough as research suggests that we also need stretching exercises to help reduce pain and discomfort caused by prolonged working.

 

In conjunction with Physiotherapy Day this 8 September, we bring you a series of 3 stretching exercises to improve the flexibility of major muscles in your upper limb and lower limbs, as well as spine. Whether you have been spending many hours daily working in front of your laptop, taking care of your children or whipping up those delicious meals, you’d greatly benefit from these stretching exercises.

 

1. Overhead Hand Behind Back

Instructions:

  • Can be done either seated or standing up straight
  • Lift your left arm upward, then bend your elbow and reach your left fingers down your back
  • Wrap the right arm behind your back, right fingers reaching up towards the left fingers
  • Move your hands close to each other and if they touch, allow your fingers to grab each other
  • Draw your elbows back and lift the chest
  • Hold for 10 counts and switch sides
  • Repeat up to three times per side
  • Tip: Can’t touch hands yet? No worries! Grab a towel, belt or scarf, etc between the two hands
Doing this stretch daily will:
  • improve flexibility in arms
  • improve blood circulation
  • relieve tensed shoulders

 

2. Back extension

Instructions:

  • Can be done either seated or standing up straight
  • Check your surrounding to ensure you don’t hit the back of your head
  • Place your hands on the small of your back
  • Bend backward as far as possible
  • Hold for 10-20 seconds then return to upright position
  • Repeat up to three times
Doing this stretch daily will
  • improve flexibility in spine
  • improve body posture
  • ease back aches

 

3. Hamstring stretch

Instructions:

  • Remaining seated, extend one leg outward
  • Reach toward your toes
  • Hold for 20 seconds then relax
  • Repeat for three times on the same leg before changing to the other leg
  • Be sure to do this one leg at a time
  • You should feel a gentle stretch but no pain
  • You can try it standing up and reaching down to touch your toes
Doing this stretch daily will
  • improve flexibility in legs
  • release tension in legs
  • prevent backaches

 

The above stretches are also a glimpse of how physiotherapy can help us to
  • reduce aches and pain
  • improve body posture
  • improve blood circulation
  • prevent injuries
  • promote overall wellness and improve quality of life
While many see physiotherapy as mainly aimed at healing people recovering from injuries or with disabilities, as well as helping athletes to improve their performance, it actually plays an important part in everyone’s general wellness. Physiotherapy and its practitioners have become more relevant to us these days as we work and play hard, or do our best to care for the family.

 

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