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How To Achieve Enduring Health and Vitality
John W. Travis, M.D. & Regina Sara Ryan
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Exercise in Bed

How you start the day can set the tone for how you live the rest of it. These exercises are designed to get you moving easily, first thing in the morning. Releasing the kinks that you may have built up will energize you and may even make the transition from bed to floor a less traumatic one. Choose among the movements below and develop your own routine.

On Your Back

  • The rack stretch - Extend your legs as far as they will go; point your toes and stretch your arms out to either side, extending your fingers. Hold for a few seconds. Release. Repeat two or three times.
  • Reach for the ceiling. Extend and then contract your fingers. Tense, relax, and shake your arms.
  • Extend your right leg over your left leg at a 90-degree angle from the trunk, if possible (go as far as is comfortable). Repeat several times. Then do the same with your left leg. Rest.
  • Bring your knees up toward your chest. Grasp them with your arms. In this position, roll to your left, then back to center, then roll to your right. Repeat as often as is fun. Release your knees. Extend your legs.
  • To the count of 1-2-3, arch your lower back. Hold. Repeat the count and lower it to the bed again. Rotate your pelvis clockwise three times. Rotate counterclockwise three times.
  • Bend your knees and place your feet flat on the bed. Raise your buttocks off the bed. Hold for a count of 1-2-3. Lower your buttocks back onto the bed. Repeat three or four times.
  • Inhale as you turn your head to the right slowly, lowering your right ear to the bed. Exhale as you return to the center. Repeat, turning your head to the left. Do this three or four times. Relax.

On Your Belly

  • Bend your knees and bring your heels back toward your buttocks. Hold. Lower your feet to the bed again. Repeat twice.
  • Bring your knees up under your chest, then reach back and hold your feet. Tuck your head down toward your chest. Feel your neck and back stretch with this one. Release your feet; raise your head and straighten your back, sitting back on your legs and feet.

When you're done, look in the direction of the sunrise. Smile and greet the day. Get out of bed.

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