Newsletter no. 14 – Monday 6 September, 2021
This is the web-based version of Stretch Therapy Newsletter no. 14
And in the era of COVID-19, with everyone spending additional time on the computer and devices, these muscles need stretching more than ever – because if you don't discharge the tension that each day creates, in time what can just be an annoying little ache or pain can develop into something more serious.
And the best reason we have left to last: it simply feels absolutely sensational to stretch these muscles, because they are the first places we accumulate tension in on a daily basis. Each of these exercises has a different focus point in the body (and depending on how much neck flexion you add to any of these movements, that point can be moved up or down the spine). Altogether, these will stretch all the muscles on the back side of the body, from the bottom of your skull down to your sacrum.
Floor upper and middle back stretch
This is Stretch Therapy's preferred middle and upper back stretch these days. This movement is the antidote to too much computer work (or too much sitting, in general). Could this be you? 🙂
Standing lower back stretch
Because of the proportion of the body's muscles involved, the emphasis in this exercise is on the posterior superficial fascial layer – you may feel the main effects anywhere from the neck, middle back, lower back, hamstrings and even calves. The secret power of this movement is to use the quadriceps to bring on the stretch – this activates the agonist-antagonist reflex, so the net effect is that the body is stretching itself. This is the fastest way to remap what the brain believes is the maximum desirable length of all the tissues involved.
“Three Amigos” upper back stretch
Named in homage to the the movie of the same name, this little exercise is absolutely fantastic for the neck, middle, and upper back, and is fast and easy to do after any bends that tend to tighten these areas. It is a perfect antidote to hours spent at the computer!
A note from a student
In your lessons I’ve found something special. I'm enjoying the stretch therapy; it's perfect for me. Many thanks
Annette F., Australia