-Try This Great Total-Body Stretch!-
Many of you may be familiar with the “downward dog” pose in yoga. Many of you may also be familiar with “upward dog.” I am not a yoga guru, although I do incorporate some poses in my clients’ routines as well as my own. With this being said, here’s a great total-body stretch that is a spin on the “flow” of up dog/down dog. I learned of this variation from Anthony DiLuglio of Art of Strength. He calls these “Pumps.”
Please excuse the poor video quality!
What you’re going to do is start on your stomach and elevate your body by coming up on your toes. Your hands should be in line with your shoulders, fingertips pointing straight ahead. Pull your shoulders back, and look up. You should feel a stretch in your abs and hip flexors (front of hips). You may also feel a stretch in your shoulders. Squeeze your shoulder blades together and keep your glutes tight as you exhale. Look over your right shoulder, then your left. You should feel a stretch along the opposite side of your torso. Then, shift into downward dog by leading with the hips as you exhale. This is very important, as it ensures your low back is in the best position. Press your heels into the floor and look at your belly button. Try to keep your ears between your elbows! You should feel a stretch in your calves, hamstrings, and chest/shoulders. Return to starting position and repeat 5-10 times.