Whether you have a strict morning routine or like to take things slow, how we spend the first hours after waking up can have a tremendous impact on our health, productivity, and even our mood for the day. While we may know that regular exercise is important, incorporating stretching into your morning wake-up routine can have many positive benefits and help you better take care of your body and mind. Some may even accompany their daily stretching with meditation or breathing practices to bring a spiritual aspect to their routine. From the most basic stretches such as the child’s pose to more demanding positions, there will always be some kind of movement that you can do every day, no matter your age. Here are some reasons why you should consider making proper stretching part of your morning routine and experience the many ways it can affect your overall wellbeing.
Your muscles become tenser and stiffer after sleeping for several hours. Moving your body and allowing those muscles to stretch can prepare them for further movement and strength throughout the day. In addition, stretching gets the blood flowing throughout your body which can wake up your mind, help you focus better, and sharpen your senses. Stretching deeply can also help relieve stress and anxiety by putting you in a calmer, more alert, and focused state. Additionally, for those who get cold easily, a little bit of stretching can make a difference to help warm your body up when you need it by contributing to better circulation.
Mobility is something that many people take for granted until their age catches up to them and their joints and muscles don’t move as well as they used to. Daily mindful stretching can give a huge boost to your flexibility and mobility as moving your body every day will help it stay used to working and moving in those positions and keep the ability to do so for longer. While some people are more naturally flexible, consistent stretching will increase your flexibility at your own pace, making it easier to make essential movements such as bending down. With the improvement of these qualities, you will also decrease the chances of injuring yourself, as your body increases its range of motion and bends more easily.
Millions of people today work while seated in chairs, both at home and in the office. Many acknowledge that our lives have become increasingly sedentary and screen-dependent which promotes poor posture in our daily activities. Taking time to stretch every morning with proper posture can help you train your body to assume these positions more naturally when working or seated. This can also continue throughout the day if necessary. Taking a short break now and then from working gets your blood flowing again and keeps your body comfortable with moving instead of staying in one place.
Stretching can also have many hidden effects on our bodies, such as keeping away aches and pains that you might encounter in daily life, especially while you age. Similar to developing flexibility, when you stretch, your body gets used to being in a certain position and is less likely to be painful when doing other activities. Additionally, if you have experienced a strenuous day or a hard workout, stretching the next morning can help relieve muscle soreness and speed up the recovery process. Don’t wait until things start to be a problem before you work on a solution. Your body may thank you in the future for making the effort now to stretch daily and keep your body in good condition.