6 Daily stretches for a happy spine

If you, like millions of people, sit for more than 6-8 hours a day in front of a computer, chances are that your back, not to mention the rest of your body, can use a good stretch a few times a day.

But stretching alone and aimlessly is not only a waste of your time; it may also not bring the benefits that you expect. Instead, give this 3-minute Yoga routine a try.

In the Yoga world we call these series the 6 Ranges of Motion. They can be done at any time of the day without any equipment whatsoever and no special clothing is required either. Though if you, like me, wear heels often, then it may be a good idea to remove them before doing this routine.

Start in a standing position and reach both hands up. Interlace your fingers and point your index towards the sky.

As you stand tall and reach your hands towards the sky, tuck your ribs under and bring your belly muscles upwards and inwards.

As you stand tall and reach your hands towards the sky, tuck your ribs under and bring your belly muscles upwards and inwards.

From there, lengthen your entire body as tall as you can. Use your right hand to help you BEND to the right while keeping your heart facing forward. Take a few inhales and exhales there and come back to center and repeat on the other side.

Try not to collapse on your chest by pressing your chest forward and keep your spine as straight as you can.

Try not to collapse on your chest by pressing your chest forward and keep your spine as straight as you can.

Don’t forget to breathe while you are here; take 5 full inhales and exhales if you can.

Don’t forget to breathe while you are here; take 5 full inhales and exhales if you can.


If you have shoulder issues and raising your hands above your head is painful, then keep both hands at your chest and/or by your sides and bend from the waist.

After bending our spine right and left, we now focus on TWISTING the spine. This one will bring some fire to your thighs as well.

Start by bending your knees and bring your hands towards the sky; this is known as the Chair Pose.

Bring your belly muscles upwards and inwards while you are here and keep your arms as straight as you can.

Bring your belly muscles upwards and inwards while you are here and keep your arms as straight as you can.

From there, twist right by allowing your belly and your chest to rotate to the right. Squeeze your shoulder blades together and hold this pose for a few inhales and exhales. Come back to center and twist to the other side.

Place the outer part of the left elbow against the outer part of your right knee as you twist. Choose to look up if it does not hurt your neck, otherwise, look down at your toes.

Place the outer part of the left elbow against the outer part of your right knee as you twist. Choose to look up if it does not hurt your neck, otherwise, look down at your toes.

Place the outer part of the right elbow against the outer part of the left knee. Squeeze your shoulder blades together as you hold the twist.

Place the outer part of the right elbow against the outer part of the left knee. Squeeze your shoulder blades together as you hold the twist.

Twisting from this squatting position is not usually recommended if you suffer from low back pain or have very tight hamstrings. Instead, twist from a standing position. Simply, stand up tall, as you did earlier, reach your hands up, interlace your fingers and rotate the palms of your hands up towards the sky. From there, lengthen through the spine and twist your torso to the right, while keeping your hips facing forward. The come back to center and twist to the left.

Last, but not least, we bend backwards, also known as a BACKBEND and fall forward, also known as a FORWARD FALL.

Come back to a standing position and place your hands on your lower back. Separate your feet a bit wider than your hips and use your hands to help you press your hips forward, squeeze your shoulder blades together, and if you are able to, press the crown of the head towards the back of the room. If that bothers your neck, then stay right in the middle while pressing your chest forward. Think of this as a stretch for your belly.

It’s super hard to breathe in this position, so just do your best to take one or two slow full inhales and exhales.

It’s super hard to breathe in this position, so just do your best to take one or two slow full inhales and exhales.

Come back to standing with an inhale and fall forward as you exhale. Keep your knees bent if you have really tight hamstrings and/or if you have any issues with your lower back.

fall forward edited.JPG

And there you have it, these 6 Ranges of Motion will help release tension from your back and body, so practice them as often as you can.

Have any Yoga related questions? Email me at : wellness@themonicamethod.com

Namaste