ARTICLES / General /A Job With Many Benefits /
By Kathy Glenn, Janet Hennard and Jayne Shale
Single knee to chest. Lying on your back, pull
one knee at a time toward your chest. Hold for five
seconds while breathing deeply. Repeat with the
opposite leg. Work up to three times and hold each
knee for up to 20 seconds.
Trunk rotation. Lying on your back, bend your
knees, keeping your feet on the bed at least
hip-width apart. Gently roll the knees from side to
side as far as possible without discomfort. Hold for
10 seconds, working up to 10 repetitions. Caution:
Do not push through pain; you should feel only a
gentle stretch in the spine.
Ankle pumps. Lying on your back with legs down,
flex your feet towards you, then point them away
from you. Hold each position for up to 10 seconds,
working up to 10 repetitions.
Coming to a Seated Position
This exercise helps
you sit up while protecting your spine. While lying
on your back, bend the knees, feet flat on the bed.
Pull your belly button to your spine while
continuing to breathe. Slowly roll to your side,
keeping your shoulders in line with your hips. As
you bring your legs off the bed, use your arms to
push your torso into a seated position on the edge
of the bed. Keep your belly button to your spine
during the entire move. You may
use this same technique to lie down.
After coming to a seated position, use yoga
breathing techniques to bring sufficient oxygen to
the blood and the brain before standing.
Come to the edge of the bed with your feet on the
floor and your hands pressing gently against the
sides of the bed for support.
Breathe naturally through the nostrils and merely
observe your breath for a few moments, without
trying to correct or challenge your breath. Observe
how the abdomen expands on the inhale and contracts
on the exhale.
Begin to gently deepen the breath, observing its
ability to lengthen on both the inhale and the
exhale. Focus on bringing the breath to the abdomen
rather than the chest.
Repeat 15-20 rounds of inhaling and exhaling this
way, focusing as much as possible on nothing but
Yoga Routine after Standing
Once you are standing, you can add movements to
further strengthen key muscles.
- Mountain pose. Standing tall with the feet hip
distance apart, press into the floor while you
engage your abdominal muscles, bringing your belly
button toward your spine. Gently roll your shoulders
back, arms at your side. On each exhale, squeeze
your belly button toward your spine. Repeat for 10
breaths, working up to 15. This helps strengthen
abdominal muscles and balance.