May has finally arrived, and if you’re like me, it’s difficult to pace ourselves on gardening projects. The lure of the garden makes it a challenge to stay hydrated, eat, and come indoors short of 8 hours, let alone find the time to stretch.
The next day we wake up very sore. The low back is stiff and it’s hard to get moving in the morning, right? But the only way I will take time to stretch is if it’s convenient, no equipment is needed, and the stretches are fast and easy.
I realize you don’t want to hear all of the anatomical jargon, so I’m going to simply give you the top three lower body stretches to perform for your back after gardening. Spend just 5 MINUTES before you call it quits for the day and your back will be much happier the next morning!
- Hold each stretch for 30 seconds
- Avoid bouncing
- Effective stretching results in slight discomfort, not pain
Begin by sitting in a lawn chair. Scoot toward the edge of the chair and allow your should blades to rest on the back of the chair (keep space between your low back and the chair). Hold underneath one knee and pull it in toward your chest, imagine you are making a “C” with your spine. Switch sides. Complete the stretch by pulling both knees in toward your chest. Feel the stretch in the low back.
Begin by sitting in a lawn chair. Scoot toward the edge of the chair and place one heel on the ground in front of the chair with a straight leg; the opposite knee is bent with the foot on the ground. Place your hands on the bent knee for support. Gently lean forward with a straight spine and feel the stretch in the back of the leg. Switch sides.
Begin by sitting in a lawn chair. Cross one ankle over the opposite knee. Gently lean forward keeping the spine straight and feel the stretch in the buns, hips, and even the low back. Switch sides.
Check out this quick video demonstrating these exercises:
See, just a quick 5 minutes before you head in for a hot bath. Let me know how the stretches work for you, cheers!