Stressed Out? This One Stretch Could Help

A woman stretching her arms behind her back.
Collin Quinn Lomax/Shutterstock

If your shoulders are in knots and your muscles feel tense, there’s a chance it might be stress-related. However, one stretch could not only relieve all of that built-up tension, but your stress level, as well.

Jordan Duncan, a chiropractor at Silverdale Sport and Spine, explained that stress doesn’t just manifest mentally, but physically, as well.

“Muscular tension is a common manifestation of psychological tension,” Duncan said in an interview with Eat This, Not That. “And by treating one aspect you can positively affect the other. We often carry stress in our shoulders, therefore stretches that help to relieve physical tension in this area can go a long way toward relieving stress.”

One particular stretch targets all of the upper body areas that hold tension, like the neck, shoulders, and head.

To do it, just stand up straight and clasp your hands behind your lower back. Then, pull your elbows back while you extend your chest forward. Stretch your arms back as far as you can without the stretch becoming uncomfortable. Hold for 10 seconds, breathe deep, then you’ll feel some of that tension release (likely, along with a few cracks).

If you need to loosen things up a bit more, try ending your day with these six stretches.

[Via Eat This, Not That]

Shea Simmons Shea Simmons
Shea Simmons is an Atlanta-based writer who has written about everything from whether Crisco is a good moisturizer to how to KonMari your space. Her work has appeared in Bustle, My First Apartment, and Make It Grateful. Read Full Bio »

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