Health & Wellness

3 reasons why you should stretch each morning

July 4, 2018
3 reasons why you should stretch each morning

OOOh I love a big stretch when I wake in the mornings.  Apart from the fact that I have lower back problems and stretching helps, I just love stretching up and feeling my body wake up.  You can even stretch before you get out of bed.  I also am a great believer in regular stretching poses especially after workouts and if I’ve been sitting for longer periods.  I use specific stretches for running which help my tight hip flexors, hamstrings and calves.

Stretching at any time of the day is important in keeping our mind and bodies in good physical shape.  It is however, sometimes overlooked but should be included with your workout or even on it’s own.  Sitting for long periods is a ‘no-no’ so you can also set your clock to remind you to stand and take a long stretch.

In this post, I’m concentrating on stretching when you first wake.  I  suffer lower back problems and doing stretches first thing really helped to relieve the pain and set me up for the day.

3 reasons why you should stretch each morning

Improves Blood Circulation

Stretching gets the blood flowing to your muscles and your brain.  Your muscles have tensed up overnight so sometimes you may feel a few aches and pains when you wake up.  Doing some slow stretches will loosen up your muscles and improve your concentration levels.

Helps your mind and body welcome the day

Taking a few minutes to stretch when you wake up helps your mind and body start the day in a positive manner.  Okay, you might need your coffee or tea first but making the time to stretch will give your body a warm glow.  Try it!

Improves our flexibility

As we age, our flexibility is not as good as it once was.  Try touching your toes!  However, stretching will increase your flexibility.  I know I tried 30 days of stretching and was pleasantly surprised at how flexible I felt.

Of course, I find that if I don’t keep up the stretching it doesn’t take long to lose that flexibility and also my lower back can cause me grief!  I’ve proven to myself that I by regular stretching and yoga, my back pain is virtually gone.

Easy Stretches to start your day

Do you take time to stretch each morning?  Your body and mind will love you for it!

3 reasons why you should stretch each morning

 

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75 Comments

  • Reply The Widow Badass July 4, 2018 at 01:32

    This is just what I needed to see today. Thanks Sue!

    Deb

    • Reply Sue Loncaric July 4, 2018 at 05:35

      Hi Deb, glad I could be of help! I’ve been stretching more lately and it has really helped my lower back pain. Enjoy! xx

  • Reply cathi July 4, 2018 at 01:50

    This is a great reminder of something so important!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric July 4, 2018 at 05:36

      Hi Cathi, my Personal Trainer always stretched me at the end of each session and I never really thought much about doing it myself. Now that I do regularly stretching my lower back pain has disappeared and I’m feeling much more flexible and strong. Enjoy your day, Cathi and thanks for stopping by to comment x

  • Reply Kim July 4, 2018 at 03:12

    I have to be EXTREMELY careful when I stretch these days. I haven’t yet figured out why but if I stretch too far I cramp. Hard, painful cramps. It’s no fun at all but I do love a good stretch!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric July 4, 2018 at 05:38

      Hi Kim, hmmm cramping maybe your body needs magnesium. I take that or just drink tonic water and it helps with the cramps. I also take glucosamine for my joints. These seem to have helped my cramping. You might also be overextending yourself so just a gentle stretch can be just as effective. Have a great day and thanks for stopping by x

  • Reply Natalie July 4, 2018 at 06:29

    Hi Sue – I agree with you totally. Gentle stretches are wonderful not only for the benefits that you pointed out but also keep us in tune with our body and maintain a wide range of motions that we can do. I stretch every morning when I wake up and after each workout session and my runs.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric July 4, 2018 at 13:20

      Hi Natalie, I used to only stretch when my PT stretched me after each workout. Now I do it myself and find it has helped my lower back pain tremendously. As I’m training for a marathon in August I need the stretching after my long runs. I find my body just feels wonderful after a good stretch. x

  • Reply Heather Erickson July 4, 2018 at 07:31

    My rheumatologist once told me to start each day like a cat. before I even get out of bed I stretch everything gently, taking my time to get everything moving before jumping into the day. It was great advice. I love your reasons for stretching, as well.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric July 4, 2018 at 13:22

      Hi Heather! Yes it feels wonderful doesn’t it and cats or dogs always look so elegant when they are having a good stretch. I suffer from lower back pain and my osteopath suggested the same thing as your reheumatologist. It is a great way to wake up our bodies before we even get out of bed. Have a beautiful week and thanks for stopping by xx

  • Reply Denyse Whelan July 4, 2018 at 08:37

    Oh my, I know about the value of stretches but really do not do this as much as I need. Thanks for the reminder. Denyse x

    • Reply Sue Loncaric July 4, 2018 at 13:24

      Hi Denyse, it is one of those things isn’t it? We know we should do it but sometimes we just conveniently forget or it hurts. I have found my lower back pain has completely gone since I’ve made the effort to increase my stretching. Even just a stretch as you wake up does wonders. Have a beautiful day, Denyse 🙂

  • Reply Candi Randolph July 4, 2018 at 08:42

    Well, I am very, very bad when it comes to stretching, so your post was definitely speaking to me. I will keep the video handy and resolve to make more of a commitment. I know it will benefit me in many ways. Thanks!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric July 4, 2018 at 13:25

      I used to be like that Candi and only stretched when my PT stretched me after workouts. Now I do yoga and stretching myself and have really felt the benefits especially in the reduction of lower back pain. I like to follow a video as I feel like I’m in a class and it keeps me focused. Happy Stretching! 🙂

  • Reply agnesknowles July 4, 2018 at 09:42

    I too love my morning stretches – I do them before I get out of bed and it’s a fabulous way to wake up the body. I’m nursing a knee injury right now so I’m finally getting back to my yoga and that is a perfect start to my afternoon.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric July 4, 2018 at 13:26

      Hi Agnes! Lovely of you to visit and leave me a comment. Morning stretches before you get out of bed are delicious aren’t they? I have found that increasing my stretching has certainly helped my lower back pain. I’m a yoga fan as well. Have a wonderful day and thanks for stopping by xx

  • Reply Jennifer July 4, 2018 at 10:22

    If I don’t do some stretching in the morning then I can’t get moving the way I need to move! All those stretches in the video are great. One of them is a yoga pose called Mukasana or wind relieving pose. I’ll let you figure out which one! 🙂

    • Reply Sue Loncaric July 4, 2018 at 13:30

      I do all of those stretches Jennifer and my lower back pain has really decreased dramatically. A good stretch really gets you going and yes I think I know the post you are referring to – great relief 🙂

  • Reply Molly July 4, 2018 at 10:32

    Over the past few months I’ve learned I have such a warped view of “exercise” – a perspective that drastically needs to change.
    I always thought exercise had to be unpleasant or I wasn’t doing it right.
    I never thought of stretching (something that feels good) as something that could be good for me.
    I adhere to the “all or nothing” mentality which is keeping me from making progress toward a healthy lifestyle.
    Your posts, as well as other #MLSTL bloggers, are helping me to realign my expectations and gain an accurate view of exercise. Thank you!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric July 4, 2018 at 13:33

      Hi Molly I wrote a post a while ago about replacing the word ‘Exercise’ with physical activity or movement. Exercise seems such a harsh word and sounds like hard work. Whereas daily movement has a gentler sound and could mean dancing or yoga or walking – anything at all. Stretching is a great way to work out and keep our flexibility. We do need to take baby steps so we don’t injure ourselves but I understand the ‘all or nothing’ mentality because I have that as well. I’m so happy you are enjoying my posts and also those of #MLSTL bloggers. We are all gaining inspiration and learning from each other. Have a beautiful day 🙂

  • Reply Leanne | www.crestingthehill.com.au July 4, 2018 at 15:47

    Stretching is the nicest part of any exercise isn’t it Sue – important but also easy and it feels great. You’re right about there being nothing better than a good stretch when you wake up in the morning – then we just need to remember to do it more often during the day!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric July 4, 2018 at 16:34

      Yes I’ve really come to love it Leanne and my back loves it too – no back pain at the moment which is great!

  • Reply Leanne | www.crestingthehill.com.au July 4, 2018 at 15:48

    PS – Looking forward to another great #MLSTL and I’ve shared this on my SM (of course!)

  • Reply Jennifer Jones July 4, 2018 at 20:19

    I agree with everything in this post Sue. Stretching is really important, especially stretching after exercise. That should be part of the workout and not skipped or rushed. But I do love a good long stretch when I wake and before. I climb out of bed. Shared #MLSTL

    • Reply Sue Loncaric July 6, 2018 at 06:29

      Hi Jen, my P.T. was very particular about incorporating a long stretch at the end of our sessions. It felt so good when she stretched me but have to confess I didn’t do much on my own. I know realise the importance and feel so much better after regularl stretching. My lower back pain has gone! x

  • Reply cherie July 4, 2018 at 20:38

    I too have low back issues, and they get ten times worse when I don’t do my daily stretches!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric July 6, 2018 at 06:29

      HI Cherie, I hear you about the lower back issues and it tells me when I haven’t been stretching that is for sure! x

  • Reply Cathy Lawdanski July 4, 2018 at 21:45

    Yes I do – but it’s after coffee!!! I have a 12 minute full body yoga routine that I do. I’ve been doing it so long that if I DON’T do it when I wake up, I feel off the rest of the day!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric July 6, 2018 at 06:31

      Oh yes, Cathy after a coffee! Yoga is such a great way to start the day and you don’t need a long practice. I love the Yoga Studio app because it has so many different sessions and times to choose from, so a 10-15 minute one each morning makes me feel great!

  • Reply Victoria July 5, 2018 at 00:23

    Sue thank you for the reminder. I do need to be doing more stretching in my day. I sit a lot and get very stiff.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric July 6, 2018 at 06:33

      Hi Victoria! I agree, my back certainly feels so much better when I stretch and in fact, my whole body feels great. I’m guilty of sitting for too long some days so stretching and going for a walk helps to counter that. Have a great week! xx

  • Reply Deborah Weber July 5, 2018 at 03:54

    What a great reminder Sue. I really do notice a difference when I take time to stretch in the morning, and it’s even better when I also take the time to add an additional stretch before going to bed. And yet, while it only takes a few moments it’s also one of the things most likely to get skipped over for me. I’m going to take this post as a gently admonishment, and recommit to a daily practice – thank you.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric July 6, 2018 at 06:35

      I agree it is so easy to skip it, isn’t it Deborah? However, I know that stretching really helps my lower back and so I try to incorporate it every day because it makes such a difference. I’m pleased my post was a reminder and encouragement for you to recommit. Have a fabulous week! x

  • Reply Laurie Stone July 5, 2018 at 05:04

    So agree. I do the Sun Salutation each morning (a yoga routine) which works every muscle. Not sure what I’d do without it.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric July 6, 2018 at 06:36

      Hi Laurie! I love yoga and the Sun Salutation is a lovely way to wake up our bodies. It doesn’t have to take long but so beneficial to our bodies and our minds. xx

  • Reply Christie Hawkes July 5, 2018 at 05:14

    I love a good stretch. I’ve always stretched after a workout, but more recently have started doing gentle stretches in the morning. It was good to read some of the benefits. Thanks Sue!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric July 6, 2018 at 06:38

      I feel great after a stretch Christie. I have really been trying to do this more, especially as we are training for a long run. It is amazing how quickly your flexibility improves if you are stretching every day. Wishing you a beautiful day, Christie xx

  • Reply Donna McNicol July 5, 2018 at 05:21

    Great reminder…these are the stretches I remember from my beginner yoga class for seniors. I need to resume these!

    #MLSTL visitor (shared on SM)

    • Reply Sue Loncaric July 6, 2018 at 06:40

      Hi Donna, they aren’t difficult to do and you feel so much better after. I know my back pain is so minimal now that I regularly stretch and do yoga. Have a great day and thanks for sharing. xx

  • Reply Leah July 5, 2018 at 06:50

    I’ve been struggling with tendonitis and stretching is the only thing that helps (besides medicine). Yoga is my new favorite exercise!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric July 6, 2018 at 06:39

      Yes I love yoga, Leah. I use an app – Yoga Studio and I feel so good after even a 10 minutes session. I think people certainly underestimate the value of a good stretch! Wishing you a fabulous week and thanks for stopping by xx

  • Reply samfiftysomething July 5, 2018 at 17:01

    I’ve just started back doing yoga every morning. I used to do it but got out of my routine since moving onto the boat. I’ve now found my flow again & proved I can still stretch out in a smaller space & I even hold those poses even while on water, most times 😂

    • Reply Sue Loncaric July 6, 2018 at 06:43

      It is a lovely way to start the day isn’t it Sam? My personal trainer, used to work on luxury yachts and also said you could work out in any space. As for holding poses on water, next you will be walking on water LOL:) Have a beautiful day xx

  • Reply Leanne @ Deep Fried Fruit July 6, 2018 at 07:24

    Agree! ((She says thinking about the benefits of stretching but not actually getting onto the floor to do it … OK, OK, I’m on my way …) #teamlovinlife

    • Reply Sue Loncaric July 6, 2018 at 17:37

      Good for you Leanne, you will feel better for it! 🙂

  • Reply Kathy Marris July 6, 2018 at 08:07

    Yes I love a good stretch in the mornings. I generally do them in bed before I arise, starting with knee bends. It helps to wake me up and helps with the stiffness I feel when I get out of bed. At my age I need to keep flexible! #TeamLovinLife

    • Reply Sue Loncaric July 6, 2018 at 17:38

      We all need to keep flexible, Kathy I hear you. Love your new photo of you, looking Sizzling!

  • Reply Janet Mary Cobb July 6, 2018 at 08:07

    I don’t stretch enough — I’ll ponder how best to work it in – thanks for the reminder.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric July 6, 2018 at 17:38

      Even a few minutes when you first get up Janet will start your day well. 🙂

  • Reply Joanne Tracey July 6, 2018 at 08:11

    Thanks for the reminder. I get out of bed, get changed for my walk & am out the door 10 mins after waking up. I should stretch more. I really should. For all of these reasons.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric July 6, 2018 at 17:39

      Maybe a quick stretch when you get to the beach or when you get home – just 5 minutes Jo 🙂

  • Reply Jan Wild July 6, 2018 at 14:45

    Now I can’t say that I stretch every day but I sure know the benefit of it. I had bursitis in a hip and after months of agony and a cortisone injection it was stretching that nailed it. If I get the slightest twinge I know that doing my stretches will send it away – yay. I love Pilates for the stretching too. Sharing this x

    • Reply Sue Loncaric July 6, 2018 at 17:44

      I hear you Jan. My back has improved so much I am back to running long distances with no problem at all. Even if we just regularly stretch it can make all the difference and you pilates would certainly be helping. Have a great weekend, Jan! 🙂

  • Reply Michele Morin July 6, 2018 at 21:36

    YES!
    I’m trying to be more intentional about stretching, and it’s really improved the way I feel.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric July 7, 2018 at 04:55

      It makes you feel great, doesn’t it Michele? Have a beautiful day x

    • Reply Sue Loncaric July 9, 2018 at 07:11

      Hi Michele, it certainly starts the day well doesn’t it?

  • Reply Deborah July 7, 2018 at 13:36

    I SOOOOOO need to do this. I keep telling myself I’ll do a bit of yoga or meditate in the morning but I don’t. Even a brief stretch I know would be good. I often do some ‘roll-downs’ before I go to bed at night as my shoulders and neck are always tight and as I drop my head and let go I my neck cracks and feels like it lengthens. God it’s good.

    I also often do the side twist as my back clicks and releases as well. Ahhhhh….

    #teamlovinlife

    • Reply Sue Loncaric July 9, 2018 at 07:04

      As you say Deb, even a brief stretch first thing makes your body feel so much better. I love that side twist click you do say Ahhhh don’t you? x

  • Reply Suzy July 8, 2018 at 22:07

    I do some yoga stretches each morning and agree that it does feel good. Thanks for sharing the video. Those are easy stretches to add to my routine.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric July 9, 2018 at 07:08

      Hi Suzy, sometimes it is easy to try to overdo it with stretching and yoga etc. but even gentle stretching makes all the difference. Have a beautiful day and thanks for stopping by x

  • Reply Grammy Dee | Grammy's Grid July 11, 2018 at 18:25

    All good reasons, thanks for reminding us Sue ♥

  • Reply Joanne Tracey August 30, 2018 at 08:23

    In short, no I don’t. I’m out the door 15 mins after waking up. I do, however, stretch briefly when I get home or after a gym session.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric August 30, 2018 at 10:22

      At least you are up and going Jo with is good to hear! x

  • Reply jodie filogomo August 30, 2018 at 12:32

    It’s only been a couple of months since we started going to stretching classes and already my husband can tell a difference (and he is a tight guy…ha ha)!
    I believe stretching is SO important, especially as we get older!!
    XOXO
    Jodie
    http://www.jtouchofstyle.com

    • Reply Sue Loncaric September 1, 2018 at 05:15

      It really doesn’t take very long to start feeling more flexible, Jodie or if I don’t do the stretching it doesn’t take long to feel tight again! Good for you and hubby going to stretching classes you will both start to see a difference now. Have a great weekend. xx

  • Reply Min@WriteoftheMiddle August 30, 2018 at 13:09

    I love a good stretch too Sue! Must admit I don’t do this as a morning routine, however we do a lot of stretches before, during and after reformer pilates which I do three times per week. They feel so good too! Love the video – I might try incorporating some if not all of that into my daily routine. Will see how I go! xo #TeamLovinLife

    • Reply Sue Loncaric September 1, 2018 at 05:16

      I don’t do it every morning either Min, but when I don’t I certainly feel the pain in my back. If I stretch regularly my body just feels so good, no back pain and I feel about 30 years old. LOL:) xx

  • Reply Vanessa August 30, 2018 at 15:58

    I need a new mattress so maybe I won’t feel like I need to stretch so much 🙂 But it will have to wait until we make back some of the expense of moving house.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric September 1, 2018 at 05:19

      Hi Vanessa, we recently purchased a new bed and mattress and my body feels like it is in heaven when I lay down. They aren’t cheap though but worth the wait and the expense. Enjoy your new home x

  • Reply Sydney Shop Girl August 30, 2018 at 16:39

    Timely reminder for me, Sue! I’ve been so cardio obsessed that my yoga has taken a back seat and my back is paying for it.

    SSG xxx

    • Reply Sue Loncaric September 1, 2018 at 05:20

      I know what you mean SSG I need to write in my diary the days I’m doing exercise and which type I’m doing so I keep my variety going. You did so well in the City to Surf so your training certainly paid off. xx

  • Reply Suzy September 1, 2018 at 17:35

    I have a 15 min routine most mornings on my cross trainer and some weights. These stretches look easy so will try and incorporate them into my routine too. Thanks for sharing.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric September 3, 2018 at 12:28

      Hi Suzy that sounds like a great start to your mornings and I know if you add the stretches your body will fee fabulous for the rest of your day. Have a great week! xx

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