Release tension in your neck and shoulders with this terrific stretch. Do it after lifting weights or after sitting in front of a computer all day. You can sit in a chair, on the floor or, if you're one of those people with sensitive knees and tight thighs — for whom kneeling or sitting on their heels can be uncomfortable, even painful — try sitting on a firm yoga block when sitting on the floor. This will help take pressure off the front thighs and make floor exercises like this one much easier.
Sit on your heels or place a firm yoga block under your buttocks. (Use the block in the high, middle or low position until you find your appropriate height.) Place your right hand behind your hips and draw your tailbone downward to prevent overarching your low back. Keep your chest lifted and your shoulders level.
Rest your left hand on your right ear and drop your right hand toward the floor. Remember to keep your chest lifted and your shoulders level as you gently tilt your head to the left. Retract your chin inward to keep it safe on your neck. Relax in this position for three to six breaths. To come out of this stretch, release your right hand from the side of your head and return your head to the center position. Take a few breaths, reset your chest and shoulder alignment, and repeat on the other side.
Voight is the creator of a line of fitness DVDs, including "Sleek Essentials."
An after-work stretch
Use this stretch to release tension in your neck and shoulders after lifting weights or after sitting in front of a computer all day.
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