Layfhaker continues to translate for you a selection of illustrated exercises for stretching by Timon Vicky (Vicky Timón), an expert on yoga, and author of the book Encyclopedia of Pilates Exercises, and James Kilgallon (James Kilgallon), creator Mazlo’s Body Maintenance Program.


Stretching the abdominals, focusing on forearm


What are the muscle stretch: the rectus abdominus.

Performance. Lie on your stomach and lift the thorax, leaning on his elbows. During this exercise, you should feel a slight tension in the abdominals.

A comment. Direct abdominal abdominal muscle usually does not require a large amount of stretch, so this exercise several times a week after a workout at the press will be enough.

Stretching the abdominal muscles while standing


What are the muscle stretch: the rectus abdominus.

Performance. Stand with your back to any support, the foot rest on the floor at the base. Raise your hands above your head, grasp the support and, without taking his feet off the floor, a little cave in advance.

A comment. This exercise stretches accurately and qualitatively, not only the group of abdominal muscles, but also to other, no less important: the latissimus dorsi and triceps. During the stretching, remember that the body should be relaxed.

Stretching the sides in the supine position


What muscles stretch: obliques, latissimus dorsi, square lumbar muscles.

Performance. Lie on your back so that one side is pressed against the wall or any other support, and pull his hands behind his head. Then begin to pull your upper body in the opposite direction. At the same time the legs and hips should not rip off the wall.

A comment. Institution hands behind your head includes work the latissimus dorsi and teres major muscle. They pulled his hand back and down, leading her to the body (adduction), and rotated inward (pronation). If the hands remain outstretched at your sides, will only stretch the abdominal muscles.

Lateral stretching in pairs


What muscles stretch: obliques, latissimus dorsi, square lumbar muscles.

Performance. Stand sideways with your partner each other at a distance of approximately one-step, feet together. Grasp each other’s forearms on the inside, with the outer sides of the hands and clasped his hands lift, forming an arch. From this position, gently rotten in the direction of partner stretching the outer side of the body. Legs at the same must not break away from the floor or change position.

A comment. It is advisable that you do not greatly differ from each other in height and weight, otherwise the exercise will not be very convenient and effective. The main purpose – to stretch the entire lateral surface, including the glutes, obliques and latissimus dorsi.



What are the muscle stretch: the rectus abdominis, the group straightened back muscles.

Performance. Get on all fours, straightened emphasis on hands and knees. Pull in the stomach so that the back is arched upwards. In this position, relax, and push down the body, creating a reverse bending of the spine. Then take a deep breath, stretch the stomach and a slow exhale tighten your abdominal muscles.

A comment. This exercise has a positive effect on the mobility of the spine and its surrounding small muscles. Also pay attention to the importance of stretching of the spinal column, especially in the lumbar region.



What muscles stretch: medium and large gluteal muscles, Iliocostalis.

Performance. Lie on your back, bend your knees and tighten them as high as possible (almost to the chin), clasping her hands. The spine should form a small arc, while in the cervical spine should be no discomfort. Relax and linger in that position.

A comment. This exercise will make your spine and surrounding muscles and removes more mobile terminals. Especially useful for the lumbar.

Twisting of the spine by means of partner



What muscles stretch: obliques.

Performance. Sit on a flat bench, back straight, bodibar (or bracket) lies on the shoulders, you hold on to it with both ends (hands as much as possible). Partner gets behind you, takes up bodibar in the same places where your hands and gently unfolds toward you until until you feel tension in the oblique muscles of the abdomen. Then return to the starting position, breathe in, breathe out, and repeat the twisting, but in the opposite direction.

A comment. Due to the voltage that occurs in the muscles, rotator, this exercise can not be done properly without help. For maximum effect, you need to relax in the abdominal muscles and exhale at the turn of the way.

To perform a self-stretch rewound his hands behind his head and twirled yourself from side to side. This can be done even while sitting at your desk.

Lateral stretching on the floor


What muscles stretch: obliques, latissimus dorsi, square lumbar muscles.

Performance. Sitting on the heels, take one leg to the side. In this position, the begin pulling the same name arm up and away as long as tension is felt in the lateral muscles. Second hand rests on the floor.

A comment. During this stretch, you should feel tension in the whole side of the body. If you do not feel anything, try to take a step further leg to the side and pull the stronger hand, thus increasing the arc.

Stretching lying on the back with support under the loin


What are the muscle stretch: the rectus abdominis, obliques (large and small), transverse abdominal muscles, the latissimus dorsi.

Performance. Put on soft floor mat, mat or large towel twisted into a small cushion, and lay down on his back so that the bead has appeared just below the lumbar. Then stretch your arms over your head and try to stretch as much as possible.

A comment. This is a very good exercise for those who suffer from back pain caused by problems with posture . The only precaution in this exercise – you need to choose the correct roller. If it is too hard and high, bending at the waist can be too strong. Because of this, you may feel pain, and exercise will not be as effective.

The second embodiment of the exercise – without roller. In this case, the loin should be firmly pressed to the floor, and the rest of the body – relaxed. To do this, bend your knees and place your feet close to the pelvis. Try until you find a comfortable position where you can sit back and waist is pressed to the floor.