Chantal Russell on Activating your Spine

Chantal Russell on Activating your Spine

At Werklab, we are all about productivity but once a week Monday happens and getting from weekend mode to week-day mode may require some extra effort. Don't worry, we've all been there. Some days, we just need a helping hand. Enter Werk Hacks: tricks of the trade from inside the lab to have better mornings, better afternoons and better days at work. 

Your spine is the pillar of your nervous system and of your health. Taking care of it should be paramount but for so many people on the go, it just isn’t. Like brushing your teeth, stretching out your spine should be done daily and consistently. By dedicating just a few minutes to it everyday, you are doing wonders for your physical health. Chantal Russell of Bowen Island Yoga has crafted an easy way to move your spine to enhance lubrication, life longevity all the while increasing your levels of energy. Follow the easy steps below: 

To begin your stretch, start by drinking 5 big gulps of water. Take a deep breath in through your nose and feel it move through your lungs as it fills up your chest. Hold this breath to the count of 5 at the top of the inhale. Exhale as slowly and as deeply as you can.

Start to awaken your spine. Begin by standing with you feet wider than hips distance apart, gently let your arms fall by your side and twist your upper body from one side to the other letting your arms sway across your torso. Reach your arms overhead, interlace your fingers and stretch up and slightly back keeping your knees bent. Keep your fingers interlaced and your spine long as you present (side bend) your spine from one side, to the other. Come back to centre, hinge at the hips and bring your hands towards the floor. Grab your elbows and gently rock from side to side keeping your head heavy and you shoulders relaxed. After you have taken a few breaths here, slowly roll yourself back up to standing position

Finish your stretch with 5 full body breaths. During this breathing exercise, visualize your breath moving through your whole body as you inhale to the count of five and then exhale to the count of five. Lengthen and keep your breath easy as you move into the rest of your day. At the end of this practice, bring to mind 5 things that you are grateful for and feel the energy of appreciation fill your body and bathe your cells.