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Travel is back! So is anxiety. We already shared tips on how to stay calm when traveling via airplane and taking a road trip. Now, we’re sharing simple stretches to keep you limber and calm with on the road or in the air.
Here are five simple yoga stretches to ease your anxiety while traveling, courtesy of wellness contributor Gustavo Padron.
1 – Seated cow and cat.
These two poses will help reset the energy of your spine so you can sit up tall and enhance your posture.
How to do it: Start seated at the edge of your chair with your feet hip width distance apart and your hands on your knees. Inhale Cow Pose, lift your chin and chest, broaden across your collar bones and gaze up. Exhale Cat Pose, round through your spine, tuck your chin and release through your neck.
2 – Seated side bends.
Also known as lateral flexion of the spine, seated side bends can help strengthen and lengthen your torso, creating more space for your lungs so you breathe deeply and freely.
How to do it: Sit tall on your chair and gently begin to bend at your waist to the right of your body. Proceed to reach overhead with your left arm to feel a nice stretch on the entire left side of your body. Repeat on the other side.
3 – Gentle neck rolls.
Your neck is the bridge between your brain and your body, your thoughts and your emotions. Devoting a few moments to stretch/ roll out your neck will help you feel more connected and centered.
How to do it: Begin with your head straight and looking forward. Gently tilt your head to the right and start rolling it back. Keep rolling your head to the left and then down. Bring your head up to the starting position and repeat in the opposite direction.
4 – Seated figure four.
This pose can help stretch and open your hips, increasing the blood flow to your legs so you stay limber while seated.
How to do it: Seated in a chair, take the leg of the side you want to stretch and cross it over the other leg just above the knee. This will look like a figure four if you are looking down at your legs. If you don’t feel the stretch, keep your back straight and bend forward pivoting at your hips.
5 – Standing forward fold.
Do this once you get out of your car at a pit stop or when you visit the washroom on an airplane. This pose will help stretch the entire backside of your body. It will also help to restore the flow of blood and energy in your body and mind, as well as helping to reduce stress, anxiety, and fatigue.
How to do it: Exhale as you bend forward at the hips, lengthening the front of your torso. Let the crown of your head hang down and press your heels into the floor as you lift your sit bones toward the ceiling. Do not lock your knees. Slightly lift and lengthen your torso with each inhalation. Release deeper into the pose with each exhalation continuing to let your head hang.
All photos courtesy of Gustavo Padron.