Stretches to Try Before Falling Asleep

Stretching is a scientifically-proven way to improve sleep quality. Many incorporate stretching into their pre-sleep ritual because of how it relaxes the muscles, relieving stress and poor mental health symptoms.

Experts recommend stretching half an hour before bed to ensure optimal sleep quality. Calm your body and mind with at least 10 minutes’ worth of these stretches each evening.

1. Child’s Pose

This pose is popular in yoga classrooms, and for good reason. It is known to reduce back pain and stretch the muscles around your hips.

To get into child’s pose, kneel and stretch your arms directly in front of you, leaning forward. Rest your forehead on the floor and take at least eight slow, deep breaths. Your back will thank you later.

2. Standing Quad Stretch

Our quads, or the front of our thighs, get a lot of use, but are often forgotten during stretching routines. Give them some love with the standing quad stretch.

While standing, bend one of your knees, holding your ankle or foot with the corresponding hand. Pull your foot backwards until you feel a stretch, holding for 30 seconds. Repeat with your other leg. Hold onto a steadying object or stare at a fixed point on the wall to improve balance.

3. Neck Stretches

Many of us – especially those with desk jobs – spend a lot of time with our necks in the same position. Do yourself a favor before bed and give your neck the stretch it deserves.

Bring your ear towards the corresponding shoulder and hold that position for five breaths. Now turn and look over that same shoulder. Repeat this routine on your opposite side. This swiveling movement does wonders for your neck, head and shoulders.

Next, drop your chin to your chest, then tilt your head all the way back, holding each of these for five breaths each. Do these neck stretches regularly to feel more limber in the morning.

4. Cat-Cow

Silly names aside, this stretch is incredibly effective. If you spend a lot of time sitting, standing, or walking, you’ll want to incorporate this stretch into your nightly routine.

Get on your hands and knees, alternating between arching your back like a cat and letting your lower back sag, rotating your tailbone upwards. Hold each of these positions for 10 seconds, alternating at least 5 times.

5. Seated Forward Bend

Touching your toes isn’t just a requirement in gym class anymore. Sit on the ground with your legs stretched directly in front of you, bending forward with your chin tucked into your chest. The goal is to touch your toes, stretching even further than that if you can. Hold this for 30 seconds to one minute, breathing deeply.

The seated forward bend is proven to loosen your hamstrings, spine, lower back and shoulders, making it a favorite of sleep consultants.

6. Bear Hug

This pose is essentially you, giving yourself a hug, while grasping your shoulders to deepen the stretch. It’s an effective pose for your shoulders, arms and back muscles. Besides, we could all use a hug now and then.

Hold this stretch for at least 30 seconds, and just as you have been doing, breathe deeply.

Sleep Consultant Approved Before-Bed Stretches

Stretching before bed can have a monumental impact. Improved blood flow, reduced muscle tension and deeper sleep are just a few of the many benefits of incorporating it into your routine.

For more advice on how to get great sleep, explore our website today. To book an overnight sleep study or to speak with a sleep consultant, please give us a call.