Gentle stretching is the perfect way to wind down and set you up for a night of great sleep. Before going to sleep, take a few minutes to slow down and let go of tension in your neck, shoulders, back, and hips. Take 5-10 long breaths in each position on the floor or right in your bed. Grab a pillow for extra support and comfort.
Cat and Cow
Start on your hands and knees with a flat back. Breathe in as you drop your belly and lift your chest for cow pose … then breathe out as you round your back, relax your neck and press your hands into the floor for cat pose. Repeat these two poses a few times, moving slowly with your breath. After 5-10 inhales and exhales, come back to center on your hands and knees.
Child's Pose (with or without pillow)
Press your hips back towards your heels and rest in child’s pose. If you’re using a pillow, place it under your belly, chest, and head. Reach your arms along your sides or gently out in front of you, hands open and relaxed. Take 5-10 breaths here, filling your upper back with each inhale and letting your hips sink deeply on the exhale.
Sphinx Pose (with or without pillow)
Press back up to hands and knees, then lower down onto your belly. Prop yourself up on your forearms, with your elbows under your shoulders. Press the floor down with your forearms and open up across your chest for a moment.
Then lower down completely, resting your forehead on your forearms. Feel your breath move into your back.
Spinal Twist on Your Back
Bend one knee and bring it up next to you in line with your hip. Take a few rounds of breath, then—keeping that knee bent—roll over your straight leg into a twist on your back.
You can place your pillow under your bent knee if you’d like. Reach your arms out onto the floor beside you and take several breaths into your sides and hip. Then, return to your belly and do the other side: bend your other knee and roll onto your back, stretching your arms onto the floor. Take several breaths.
Lay Flat on Your Back (with or without pillow)
When you’re done, roll all the way onto your back, legs stretched straight out on the floor in front of you. Let your feet fall out to the sides and your arms rest next to you. Take some deep breaths and feel the effects of your stretches.
Keep that relaxed feeling as you make your way into bed and have a restful night’s sleep.