The mission of this blog (and for that matter, my life’s work) is to help people life happier, healthier, more mindful and creative lives. With that intent, I offer movement experiences, writing, and art that are fun and interesting and entertaining and also expand your practice, awareness and vision of yourself and what is possible.
Art in Action is a new weekly post: a short, practical guide to applying the ideas and principles in the Focus Pocus posts to your body and life. As always, I love to hear from you about how you use them and how you translate the ideas into action.
Earlier this week, I posted 10 Ways to Release Tension in Your Neck & Waist (thanks to all who shared it!) and today I’m offering 3 more simple, practical things you can do to create more ease in these always-supporting body parts.
1. Move Twice An Hour! Set a 30-minute timer at your desk. When it goes off, stand up, move around, stretch what needs stretching.
2. Hang Your Head! Stand with your feet about hip distance apart (a fist-width between your big toes), bend your knees and fold your upper body over your thighs. Bend your knees enough for your low ribs to rest on your legs and let your head drop. Gently nod and shake your head. Bonus points for swaying side to side and moving whatever feels good. (Thanks to Nia Teacher, Kate Aust for suggesting this one!)
3. Move on the Floor! There are huge physical benefits to moving and stretching on the floor. While you’re watching TV or playing with your kids or pets, get on the floor and move around, paying particular attention to move your waist and neck. Use the support of the floor and your body’s weight to stretch in ways that you can’t while on your feet.
BONUS: Five Stages! One of the best ways to stretch and strengthen your neck and waist is the Five Stages of Self-Healing. These five simple movements are the developmental movement we went through as children but rarely revisit as adults. You can follow along with this 5-minute video and get a whole body stretch and workout that is particularly good for your spine.