health

Three bedtime stretches for sounder sleep

Ashley B. Greenblatt, ACE-CPT, Certified Personal Trainer, The Sporting Club at The Bellevue

Updated: Tuesday, January 2, 2018, 5:43 AM

Ashley demonstrates a cobra pose.

Could you use a sleep aid? If you suffer from a restless mind and muscles, securing a sufficient amount of sleep can be a nightmare.

Courtesy of Ashley Greenblatt
Courtesy of Ashley Greenblatt
Courtesy of Ashley Greenblatt
Photo Gallery: Three bedtime stretches for sounder sleep

Sleep is vital to your health. When the lights turn off, your body turns on its healing abilities by repairing tissue damage, slowing your heart rate, and recharging your brain to prepare for the day ahead.

If you want to summon the sandman, try this simple stretching sequence before bed. (The following exercises can be performed in bed if you have a firm mattress; otherwise, hit a carpeted floor or yoga mat for more support.)

Make bedtime the best time by stretching yourself to sleep.

Cobra. Proper breathing plays a major role in sleep quality. This pose stretches your intercostal muscles, which line the ribs, to help expand the lungs and chest.

Reclining goddess. This heavenly pose makes for happy hips and a restful night’s sleep. If you spend the majority of your day in a seated position, chances are you have tight hip flexors and groin muscles. This stretch helps open the hip joint, providing for a better range of motion during physical and daily activity.

Corpse. Turning a busy mind off can be difficult. Stretching and meditative exercises such as the corpse pose help calm the brain by resetting the nervous system and melting muscle tension.

Ashley B. Greenblatt is a certified personal trainer and wellness coach. To learn more, visit ashleyblakefitness.com.

Ashley B. Greenblatt, ACE-CPT, Certified Personal Trainer, The Sporting Club at The Bellevue

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