Most of us know that stretching our muscles is important. It keeps the muscles strong and healthy. Strong, healthy and flexible muscles are also needed to keep your range of motion in our joints. If we don’t look after our muscles we are at a higher risk of developing joint pain and injuries.
But there is a particular stretch I would like to mention this month: The Power Pose Stretch – see below. You may or may not have heard of it, but it is great one!
But first, did you know, that stretching also produces neurochemicals in your brain?
Stretching Releases Endorphins
Stretching is a great way to generate endorphins. Endorphins are hormones that interact with pain receptors, so they make us feel good. You can get endorphins from running, you get it from exercise. You can get it through a massage. You can also get endorphins through stretching, which is probably the most accessible of all those things. Stretching is a very light form of exercise and therefore produces endorphins in the brain.
The best thing about stretching is that it is something you can do almost anywhere, any time. It is free and available to almost all of us.
The Power Pose Stretch
The particular stretch that I am going to show you is also known as the power pose made famous by Amy Cuddy in her Ted talk. The science has been kicked around a bit, but it is been reproved and re-established that it can give you:
- A 20% increase in testosterone, which is great for energy for men and for women
- A 25% decrease in cortisol.
So it boosts energy and makes us feel less stressed. Very powerful.
Now you need to hold this for two minutes and this is the pose. Your hands are pointing up, feet a little bit more than hip-width apart. Chin slightly raised there so your eyes are looking to the rising sun and you open up the chest. Bring your arms and shoulders back to the point where you can feel the stretch, but not so much that it is uncomfortable. And then you hold this position for two minutes. You breathe through it. Breathe in, breathe out.
That is how you’ll be able to hold this stretch for two minutes, but otherwise you will find that the arms get tired. But you’ll get an incredible tingling sensation during and certainly afterwards and that’s endorphins.
Feel Great After Only Two Minutes of Stretching
So stretching and using the power pose is a great way to make yourself feel better, feel more alert, feel more alive, feel more energised in just a couple of minutes done as I say anywhere.
So I hope that’s all been helpful. Try this stuff, pick out what works for you. Disregard what doesn’t, you don’t need to focus on every single aspect of this, make it work for you, make it personal, all the very best for now. Stay healthy.