How to Stretch your Abs after a Workout
After an intense workout our muscles often feel sore and stiff. To prevent that from happening, regular stretching is very important. Stretching not only relieves stress and tension, but also improves our flexibility and blood circulation; it's a necessary part of any workout routine, and we must never skip it.
Just as your other muscles, your abs too need stretching regularly. By stretching your abs you will improve your posture and keep the spine straight. In this oneHOWTO article we will tell you how to stretch your abs after a workout.
Yoga: The Cobra Pose
Bhujangasana or the cobra pose is a simple yoga exercise that is one of the easiest and most effective ways to stretch your abs after a workout. Performing the cobra pose opens up the shoulders and chest as it stretches and relaxes your abs.
The cobra pose can be executed in the following steps:
- Lie on your belly one an exercise or yoga mat. Lie straight with your hands under your shoulders and your legs together.
- Gently start lifting your head above the ground while you bring the palms of your hands forward.
- Using your hip muscles, start arching your lower back. Use your hands for extra support.
- Arch your lower back till your hands are perpendicular to ground. Slowly drop your head between your shoulder blades.
- You will feel your abs stretched and your shoulders and chest opening up. Take five deep breaths in this position.
- Slowly bring your head forward and start lowering your chest on the ground. Lay down your hands on both sides of your torso and place one cheek on the mat, returning to the initial position.
- Repeat the exercise 3 or 4 times.
To get all the benefits from yoga and introduce them to your workout routine, take a look at our article on yoga poses for non-flexible people.
This supine stretch is also known as the lying abdominal stretch, and it is a simple but effective way to stretch your abs after working out. The supine stretch can be executed in the following steps:
- Lay flat on your back on the floor or on a yoga or exercise mat.
- Extend the legs straight below you. Move your hands above your head, extending your body in a straight line.
- Rest your body and shoulders on the floor or mat.
- Slowly raise your chest off the floor while stretching your hand and legs away from your body. It should feel as if someone is pulling your hands and legs away from your body.
- This will pull your abdominal muscles in opposite directions and provide a deep stretch.
- Hold the stretch for 30 seconds and keep breathing while you are in this position.
- After 30 seconds, slowly relax your arms and legs and move back to the initial position.
- Repeat 3 or 4 times.
The standing stretch is quite similar to supine stretch - the only difference is that it is done while standing up. This kind of ab stretch elongates the abdominal muscles and releases tension from the core muscles.
The standing ab stretch can be executed in the following steps:
- Stand up straight. Keep your feet at hip-width apart and your hands straight on both sides of your body.
- Keep your head straight in neutral position and relax your shoulder muscles. Keep your spine tall.
- Slowly reach your hands above your head and join both palms.
- Then start stretching your hands as high as possible.
- Slowly arch your back and lean back slightly. You will feel your abdominal muscles being elongated.
- Hold this position for 30 seconds while taking deep breaths.
- After 30 seconds, return back to your initial position.
- Repeat the exercise 3 or 4 times.
This is how to stretch your abs after a workout. Do you have any tips? Share them in the comments section!
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