Desk Yoga for Hips, Legs and Lower Back

Did you try any of the stretches in Desk Yoga Part 1 for Shoulders and Neck? If you enjoyed those, I have 10 more stretches for the lower half of your body in Desk Yoga for Hips, Legs and Lower Back! Now, you’ll have a full body set of stretches to use whenever you’re feeling tight.

If you spend hours of your day sitting at the office, or driving, you know the, “I need to move” feeling in your legs, hips and back. Whether it’s poor posture, a bad chair or tight muscles, doing a few stretches could help alleviate some of the tension and discomfort.

Once again, these exercises can be done virtually anywhere! All seated, and all pretty simple. Remember, all of these moves should be done with a good posture!

Good Posture:

  • Plant your feet firmly on the ground, about hip distance apart.
  • Move away from the back of your chair, allowing your back to be straight, as if your back was against a wall.
  • Shoulders should be relaxed.
  • Neck slightly tucked towards the chin.
  • Ears above the shoulders.
  • Use this posture through all of the following moves!

1. Seated Forward Fold

alana-desk-yoga-legs-0008
alana-desk-yoga-legs-0007

  • Scoot to the front of your chair and extend your legs out in front of you. Toes pointed or flexed (up to you). Flexed feet will give you a deeper stretch in your calves.
  • Inhale reaching above your head, lengthening through the spine.
  • Exhale, hinging at the waist, fold over your legs (if you’re in a chair will wheels, be careful that is doesn’t move out from under you!)
  • Take a few deep breathes, allowing yourself to melt into the stretch a little more with each exhale.
  • Inhale and roll your spine up one vertebra at a time. Repeat as necessary.

2. Seated Extended Side Angle

alana-desk-yoga-legs-0006

  • Take an inhale and lengthen through the spine.
  • Exhale, leaning forward, bringing the right elbow, forearm and hand to the top of your thighs.
  • Keeping a straight spine, twisting and lengthening your torso to the left hand side, extending the left arm up and over your head.
  • Gently gaze over your left bicep. Stay here for 1-3 breathes.
  • Inhale back to center.
  • Repeat the twist on the left side.

The deeper you can extend and fold forward, the deeper the stretch throughout the whole side and low back.

3. Seated Pigeon

alana-desk-yoga-legs-0014
alana-desk-yoga-legs-0012

  • Plant your feet firmly on the ground, maintaining a proper posture (remember to scoot closer to the edge of your chair)
  • Inhale your right leg up and cross over your left thigh, allowing the ankle to rest on the top of the thigh, in a figure four shape.
  • You may already feel the stretch at this point. To take it a little further, hinge at the waist and begin to bend forward over the leg.
  • Take 3-5 deep breathes.
  • Inhale and roll up the spine. Repeat on the left leg.

4. Knee to Chest

alana-desk-yoga-legs-0016
alana-desk-yoga-legs-0017

  • Inhale your right knee into your chest, lengthening through the spine and giving your knee a squeeze in.
    • If you don’t have arms on your chair, you can gently move your knee out to the side, opening up the hip a little more.
  • Exhale, lowering your leg.
  • Repeat on the other side.

5. Wide leg forward fold

alana-desk-yoga-legs-0019
alana-desk-yoga-legs-0020
alana-desk-yoga-legs-0021

This pose may not be the most attractive to do at work or in public, but it feels SO good.

  • With your legs bent, open your knees, coming into a wide seated stance.
  • Inhale, straightening through the spine, and hinging at the waist to fold over your legs.
  • Take 1-3 breathes
  • Inhale and walk your hands to your right leg.
  • Take 1-3 breathes
  • Inhale and walk your hands back to center, and then over to your left leg.
  • Take 1-3 breathes.

6. Alternate Straight Leg Foot Extension

alana-desk-yoga-legs-0027
alana-desk-yoga-legs-0028

  • Inhale the right leg straight out in front of you, left leg stays bent.
  • Flex the right foot towards your face.
  • Inhale reaching the arms up.
  • Exhale fold over the right leg. If you can touch your toes, you can grab your foot, bending slightly at the elbows and pulling yourself a little deeper.
  • Inhale, roll up the spine.
  • Repeat on the left side.

7. Leg Raises

alana-desk-yoga-legs-0022
alana-desk-yoga-legs-0024
alana-desk-yoga-legs-0025

  • Starting in good posture, inhale, flexing the right foot and lift to hip height. Point the foot at the top, exhale and lower.
  • Switch to the left leg and repeat on each side 5 times.
  • After completing that set, reverse the motion.
  • Inhale, pointing the toes to lift. At the top, flex the foot, exhale and lower.
  • Switch to the left leg and repeat on each side 5 times.

8. Seated Prayer Twists

alana-desk-yoga-legs-0030
alana-desk-yoga-legs-0032

  • Maintaining a solid posture, inhale your palms to heart center.
  • Twist through the torso, bringing your left elbow to the right thigh.
  • Press through the hands to lengthen through the torso, chest and shoulders.
  • Inhale to center.
  • Switch and repeat on the left side.

9. Half Lotus

alana-desk-yoga-legs-0033
alana-desk-yoga-legs-0034

This exercise might require some stretchier pants and open hips. I recommend trying this after warming up with other stretches. You could hear all of my joints crack when I got into the picture above! If you have knee problems, this probably isn’t a stretch you will want to attempt.

  • Sitting with good posture, allow the left leg to be stable on the ground and lift your right leg into a figure four, right ankle over left thigh (as in the Pigeon stretch above).
  • Using your hand, move the foot into the groin crease, or as close as you are able to go.
  • Take 3 breathes.
  • Lower your leg back to the ground and repeat on the other side.
  • If your hips are open and you’re feeling good,  you may want to attempt full lotus, with both legs crossed, feet in the groin creases. Warm up with half lotus on each leg before attempting the full lotus.

10. Seated Thread the Needle

alana-desk-yoga-legs-0036
alana-desk-yoga-legs-0037
alana-desk-yoga-legs-0038
alana-desk-yoga-legs-0039

  • Inhale the right arm up and bring the left forearm and hand to the top of your thighs.
  • Exhale and begin to bend forward, bringing the extended right arm through the space between your left elbow and torso, resting the right shoulder now on your thighs.
  • You can either keep your left arm down, or inhale it to the sky. Inhaling the left arm up with begin to open the chest and shoulder.
    • If your left arm is extended, turn your palm to face the right side of your body. Bend at the elbow and allow the top of your hand to rest on your back, extending through the left shoulder.
  • Take 3 breathes.
  • Inhale back to center and repeat on the left side.

Hope these help relieve some tension. Questions and feedback is very welcome. Happy Stretching!

Namaste,

Alana

The post Desk Yoga for Hips, Legs and Lower Back appeared first on Passion for Home – Bestlaminate Blog.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s