How I Got My Groove Back! The Importance of Movement and How Gosh Darn Simple It Can be. by Ashley Hackett
Movement has always been a major part of my life. When I was young, I was always outside in the yard helping my father and through my schooling I was busy with sports and marching band (Yes, it’s a sport!). Then a scary time came when I had to obtain a job that would sustain the lifestyle I chose. This meant paying this person “Bill” every month, who had other Bookies named “College-Loan”, “Rent”, “Insurance” … you get the picture.
I eventually found an amazing job! But it was a desk job. I was always on the move, and now would be glued to a desk, 8 hours a day, 5 days a week. I started to panic about how my body would handle the transition. IT WAS AWFUL. I felt tight, stiff, achy, inflamed; I couldn’t bare the aches and pains. But then, one day in a yoga class, a few instructors bestowed upon me information that was as clear as day. “Why not try some warm-up exercises before a class to help the joints lubricate?” “What??” I thought to myself. I’ve been running for the past 12 years, practicing yoga for 10, and that didn’t occur to me? That “Aha” moment hit me hard and ever since, I have been incorporating it into my own home practices AND at my job! That achy body isn’t as stiff and grumpy! HALLELUJAH!
Just these simple movements have helped me:
Neck Releases: Depending on your body or the time of day, you may want to try something as gentle as releasing your ear to the same side shoulder and hold. Repeat on the other side. This could also include looking side to side and up and down-bringing your chin to your chest.
Wrist Circles: Make fists with the hands and circles with the wrists will help open up the wrist joints. If you have a job where you use your hands, fingers and wrists a lot, this will help you relieve some of the tightness. It will help get into the connective tissue of the hands/wrists. Also, try to bring the wrist joints together and make circles outward in front of you, then switch and go inward toward the chest.
-Ankle circles can be done with flexed and pointed feet, also!
Cow/Cat: Start with a neutral spine, relaxing the stomach-letting it move toward the floor, having a U-shape in the spine, gazing upward. This will also have a nice opening of the chest! Slowly move the gaze toward straight then downward, pulling in the stomach and rounding the spine upward toward the sky, like a cat. Make sure to actively ground down through the hands, round the spine, and engage the core!
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Boundless Yoga Staff & Students
We are continuously interested on how our reactions and responses to our personal journeys, albeit travel, adventure, new job, etc. mirror and reflect our social, emotional and spiritual ups and downs. We try every day to apply what we learn about ourselves on the yoga mat to our personal lives. Thank you for tuning in as we share some of those aspects with you.