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  • Writer's pictureJamie Yakubow

Relieve Holiday Stress with these 6 movements!

The holiday season is a time of joy, laughter, and togetherness, but it can also bring along a fair share of stress. Between the festivities, family gatherings, and the overall hustle and bustle, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed.

That’s where mindful movement comes into play! Mindful movement is all about "feeling good" and doing things that bring you back to a neutral/calm state by connecting to your mind and body.

Morning Energizers

#1 Sunrise Stretch: Start by gently stretching your arms overhead, elongating your body, and taking deep breaths. Combine this with slow, deliberate movements (eg. side bends, head rolls, wrist rolls) to wake up your muscles and promote blood flow. It might feel good to soften the knees & forward fold, reaching your hands to the floor.

#2 Morning Shakeout/Bounce: Bounce through your knees and feet –raising and lowering your heels quickly with softened knees. Simultaneously, you can add in a shake of the arms/hands as if you're flicking water off of your fingertips. Feel free to bounce around in the space or even move your arms freely overhead/around your body.

Midday Recharge

#1 Desk Yoga: Find a quiet corner, or even at your desk, and engage in a few yoga poses. From seated stretches to gentle twists, these movements can ease tension and refresh your mind. These movements can be performed all together or spread out throughout your day. Desk yoga promotes good posture and strengthens your body.

#2 Walking Meditation: Take a break from the chaos by going for a mindful walk. Pay attention to each step, the sensation of your feet on the ground, notice houses, buildings, or trees around you and the rhythm of your breath. This simple act can bring immense calmness. You might even put on a meditation from your favorite streaming service.

Evening Relaxation

Legs Up The Wall: Lay on your back and extend your legs upwards on a wall. You may want to soften the knees or even place a pillow beneath your hips/knees for additional comfort. If you spend a lot of time on your feet throughout the day or experience any lower extremity swelling, this passive yoga pose is for you. Focus on relaxing tension in the entire body by connecting to your breath.

Yoga Nidra: Starting from your toes and working up to your head, tense and release each muscle group. This practice promotes physical relaxation, calming both body and mind. If you prefer a guided approach to bedtime meditation, search "yoga nidra for sleep" on your favorite streaming service & press play!

Let's make this holiday season not just about celebration but also about self-care!

Step one is to take care of yourself so that you can care for your loved ones. If you're looking for more accountability or support through exercise & movement, give us a call at Umana Health to find a fit for you!

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