For our final installment on doing what you can to reduce the harmful effects of holiday stress on your body, here is an easy stress management tool. When you come in from shopping, put away your packages, lie down for a few minutes and stretch the kinks out.
You can stretch while lying in bed. This is a good stretching program that will give you a good total body stretch without ever getting on your feet. Do each of these small stretches 6 or 8 times:
• Start with your fingers and toes and gently stretch and contract them
• Next, move to your wrists and ankles and make circles with the joints
• Bend your elbows, bring your hands in to your shoulders
• Bend your knees, one at a time, toward your chest
• Bring your arms up to your ears and down, gently stretching your shoulder muscles
• Raise each leg, keep it straight, and raise it as far as you can.
None of these stretches requires a broad range of motion but will increase the circulation in your arms and legs and work your joints.
Remember, you don’t have to over exert yourself to stretch your muscles and improve your circulation. When you deal with debilitating pain, just doing those two things can lead to great improvement in your overall health condition.