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One of the easiest ways to stretch your chest is by using a yoga strap.

Although there are many stretches for your pectoralis major and minor muscles, I recommend starting with this stretch especially if you feel your chest, neck and shoulders are tight.

What I particularly like about this stretch is that it also improves your posture.

Many people stand in a shulmped position with their chest and shoulders rounded, their head jutting forward, their neck tightening and their overall height shortening.

My yoga students know I’m on a campaign to stamp out shlumping in my lifetime!

By stretching your chest in this manner you remind yourself to keep your chest spread and your spine tall.

When your chest is tight, your shoulders naturally round forward and your head has no place to go but forward, placing unnecessary stress on your neck.

You will not fully be able to eliminate neck and shoulder and upper back pain until you release the tight muscles in your chest.

Directions:

  1. Stand comfortably with your feet hip width apart.
  2. Bring a yoga strap behind you.
  3. Grab the yoga strap with both hands hip width apart.
  4. Keep your wrists straight and both arms straight and gently lift both arms behind you.
  5. Lift and spread your chest.
  6. Keep your spine straight.
  7. Hold 1 minute.

Benefits:

  1. Stretches your chest and shoulders.
  2. Relieves upper back, shoulder and neck pain.
  3. Improves your posture.
  4. Improves your lung capacity.

Caution:

  1. Be sure to breathe deeply and relax!
  2. Do not hyperextend your elbows or bend your wrists.
  3. Remember to keep your knees soft.

I include chest stretch in my sequence of posture exercises. You can download the directions for FREE at this link.

Want to learn more about how you can eliminate chest, shoulder, upper back and neck pain naturally? Call 678-612-8816 or email me at catherine@unlimitedenergynow.com to make an appointment. I’ll analyze your posture and explain what’s going on in your body and what you can do to feel better today.

To join Catherine’s ongoing yoga classes, follow the directions at this link. We meet Tuesday evenings from 7:30 to 9 p.m., Thursday mornings from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and Thursday evenings 7:30 to 9 p.m.

Private lessons meet by appointment Monday through Friday.

Photo of chest stretch courtesy of Diane Fulmer of Savannah, Georgia.