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Morning Mobility Routine

This is a follow-along mobility routine that emphasizes movement of the hips, spine, and shoulders - it can be done while lying on a mattress or gym mat.

Begin lying face up with you arms out by your side, knees bent, and feet flat on the mattress. From this position, swivel your hips to the right to take your right hip through external rotation and your left hip through internal rotation. Then swivel both hips to the left side to take your left hip through external rotation and right hip through internal rotation. Swivel back and forth for several repetitions.

Then, begin with both hips maximally externally rotated and from this position, swivel your right hip back and forth between internal and external rotation while keeping your left hip at its end range of external rotation - do this for about 5 repetitions. Then repeat this same sequence for your left hip while keeping your right hip at its end range of external rotation.

Next, raise your legs up so that you can hold onto your feet with both hands, right hand on your right foot and left hand on your left foot - you want to feel a stretch through your hamstrings, but it’s fine to bend your knees to some degree if you can’t maintain this position otherwise.

From this starting position, allow your legs and arms to fall to the right until your right leg touches the mattress. Then rotate everything to the left until your left leg touches the mattress, all while holding onto your feet with your hands. As you rotate from side to side in this fashion, each time you are going through this arch, allow one leg to lag behind the other to create a stretch through your inner groin, your adductor muscles. Once you complete several repetitions, take a few seconds to pull your feet down toward your chest while bending your knees and allowing your thighs to press against your torso - this position provides a healthy stretch to your hip capsule and multiple joints throughout your pelvic girdle.

Then, while maintaining hold on your feet, extend your right leg as much as you can to generate a stretch through your hamstrings - if you can completely extend your knee to make your right leg straight, this is ideal; otherwise, simply take this stretch as far as you comfortably can and repeat for 5 repetitions. Then take the left leg through the same movement for 5 repetitions.

Next, flex your left knee to allow your left lower leg to tuck under your left thigh to generate a stretch through your left quadriceps and hip flexor region. In this position, clasp your fingers together and take your arms overhead until your hands touch the mattress above your head. Repeat for 5 repetitions. Then cross your wrists and rotate your hands to clasp your fingers again but with palms facing the opposite direction than they were just before, and take your arms through the same upward movement for 5 repetitions. Then clasp your fingers normally, start with your hands on the top of your head, keep your shoulders and elbows against the mattress, and take your arms from side to side as though you are washing your hair - do this for 5 repetitions.

Follow this up by fully outstretching your arms to your sides, and while maintaining contact between your wrists, elbows, and shoulders on the mattress, slowly take your arms through an arc that begins by your thighs and ends when your hands touch one another above your head. If possible, as you take your arms through this arc, strive to keep your core engaged and your lower back pressed against the mattress.

Repeat this entire sequence with your right lower leg tucked under your right thigh.

Next, begin lying on your left side with your knees and thighs together, both bent at around 90 degrees, and your arms straight out from your body with your hands together. From this position, keep your left arm and leg against the mattress as you rotate your right arm and torso to allow your right arm to reach the other side of the mattress. Then bring your right arm back to its starting position where your hands are together again.

After about 3 repetitions of this movement, while still being on your left side, take your right arm through a circle up above your head and behind you, and then back the same way until your hands meet again - repeat for another 2-3 repetitions.

Then rotate fully to your right side and repeat this entire sequence.

Lastly, while lying on your back, hold your arms straight out from your torso, clasp your fingers, and take your wrists through full rotation in one direction and then the opposite direction - you should feel both wrists go through maximum flexion and extension as you rotate them.

If you have any questions about the movements in this routine, please use the comments section below. Thank you.

 
 

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Comments

I really appreciate the variety of your exercises.
However the part where you put one leg under to stretch quads I find too extreme. Could you suggest an alternate move.
I am a pretty flexible 73 year old but that one hurts my knees.
Thank you so much. By the way I tried your bok choy Kim chi and had the Kim chi rice last night! Yum.

Thank you Brenda! You can just skip that part and continue with the upper body movements. To stretch your quads and hip flexors, you can do so with less intensity while you are standing.