Stress Reduction – Full Body Stretching
No stranger to stress, 2006 proved to be a challenging year for me physically: I worked a full time administrative job; an independent wellness consulting job AND worked on maintaining and building my website while giving as much of my time as possible to the many civic and social obligations that I was committed to. When I went for my annual checkup luckily for me my physician found that my blood pressure was just 'yay' shy of being in the 'too high for comfort' zone. She dutifully prescribed some medication and advised me to 'relax' and take it easy. She also scheduled me a return appointment within 2 weeks. . . . .
It was lucky because I really had no idea that I was pushing myself so hard: I routinely would visit the wonderful day spay that was near the job during my lunch hour for a whole body massage; participated in the 'walk-2-miles-a-day' program on the job and I thoroughly enjoyed parking my car and walking the 2 blocks to the bus stop and 2 blocks to the job twice daily. However, a part of me did know that I was NOT relaxing deeply and this was a major contributor to the blood pressure problem. . .
So, I signed up for a cardiovascular kick-boxing class that a couple of my favorite martial arts instructors held 3 times a week. For the first two weeks, my routine started with warming my body by walking swiftly up 2 flights of stairs and then doing a full body stretching routine for 20 minutes.
Taking that class allowed me to get back in touch with my yoga training and the slow measured movements that only relaxing and letting go produces. I found that the slow, deliberate stretching routine allowed fresh oxygenated blood to flow through my muscles in a way that nothing else can do. Which is probably why all mammals do a very deep and serious stretch many times throughout the day – except for the average adult human!
One day when I was doing my after workout stretching routine, my instructor remarked, “I can see how calm you are in just a few weeks of working out. You really love stretching and that's good because a full body stretch done correctly is as effective as a good massage!”
My circulation improved and after 2 months my blood pressure returned to normal. Of course, I also incorporated some herbals that increase circulation and got back into my internal cleansing routine.
A full body stretch – one where you start with stretching your neck then shoulders, upper arms and the muscle groups going down to and including the feet – provides increased circulation, total muscle relaxation, reduction in stress and encourages deep breathing. All of these benefits work together to tone the central nervous system while providing increased toxin removal via the lymphatic system.
Most of the energizing movement systems, such as tai chi, yoga and chi gong all are methods of orchestrated stretching of the body's muscles. So go ahead and stretch long and slowly several times a day! You'll be more relaxed and energized as a result and that's what living is about!
Let's Get Healthy!
YE is Here!
HealthandWellBeing@SUR-BET.orgS.U.R.-B.E.T. Health and Well BeingMoney 'Da' Easy Way
©2008 SUR-BET Enterprises