If you've been doing a lot of squats, biking, running, or sitting for long periods, you could use a good hip and inner thigh opener. This stretch I call Frogger might look a little x-rated, but once you get past that, it'll become your new favorite post-workout move. (Though I'd refrain from dropping on the floor in the middle of your office to do this one.) Like Pigeon and Butterfly, this hip opener is intense and most beneficial if you hang out in it for a while — at least a minute.
Music: "Desafinado" by Charlie Byrd and Stan Getz
To find out how to get in and out of this pose,
- Begin on your hands and knees on a carpeted surface. If you don't have carpet, fold up a blanket so it's at least four feet long. You'll need some cushion for your knees.
- Now slowly slide your knees out to the side, away from each other, and move your feet as well so that your ankles remain in line with your knees. Flex your feet so your toes are pointing out. This stretch becomes intense quickly, so only widen your knees and lower your hips until you feel a nice stretch. You shouldn't feel any discomfort or pain.
- Once your legs are in a good position, if you're low enough you can walk your hands out and release your elbows to the ground. Use your hands to help press your hips back toward your feet to intensify the feeling in your legs. Keep your head lifted and your shoulders relaxed so your pelvis continues to press toward the ground.
- Breathe deeply in this position, staying for as long as you'd like. When you're ready to come out, move slowly. Come up onto your hands if you're not there already, and lean forward as your bring your heels together behind you. Then slide your knees together and come into Child's pose to give your hips a rest.