The Cheapest Exercise Aid You have Right Now

That wall next to you. It does wonders.

Here are 3 quick ideas you can do right now without getting too many weird looks from co-workers…

For starters, it’s great for posture. Just go stand against it – don’t be shy – it gives incredible feedback into how slumped the back really is. Now we all have curves in our back in varying degrees. We don’t want to force the curves out of the spine, instead, the goal is to create length in the vertebral column and muscle support in this more upright posture. Slide the back of your head up the wall, keeping the front of your neck long, and slide your tailbone towards the floor, while keeping it pressed into the wall. Feel the vertebra in between these two points spacing apart – the back of the head up and the tailbone down – lengthening as your entire back gets closer to the wall. Hold for a minute or two and take deep breaths. You should feel lighter and taller as you come away from the wall.

lengthen your postureKnee bends against the wall are good for knee and hip strength, while keeping your back straight and creating core awareness. Important notes: Keep toes in front of the knees, don’t bend too far or at least past 90 degrees. Secondly, work on feeling the length of the posture and of the legs while performing this exercise. Finally, scoop the belly to the spine. It helps to imagine a band around your waist pulling you into the wall.

knee bends against wall

We all need a good upper arm and shoulder stretch throughout the day.  This is one of my favorites. Do be careful to start small with this stretch. Don’t hold it too long or force it too much, since shoulders are intricate machines. With the arm straight out to the side, press the entire palm into the wall, especially the heel of the palm. Keep the shoulder of the extended arm down and even with the other, and the arm straight. Lift your spine and take deep breaths. A deep shoulder and arm stretch should ensue which might radiate all the way to the middle finger. Hold for about 30 seconds tops.

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These are just a few of the many creative exercises you too can do with a wall. No purchase necessary, just look up and find one.

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3 responses to “The Cheapest Exercise Aid You have Right Now

  1. Jane vaden

    How long should one hold the knee bends against the wall?

  2. slellison

    Good Question! Slow, steady movements are always the best way to start – The more muscle awareness and length being created within, the better. Start by pacing two, full, breaths for each knee bend:
    Inhale to bend the knees.
    Exhale to hold the position.
    Inhale to hold the position.
    Exhale to lengthen back up to a straight leg position.

    Extending the arms forward, as the knees bend down, can create a more challenging core exercise. Keep the arms straight and shoulder-width apart. Imagine the shoulders and the hips as the four corners outlining the “torso rectangle”, keeping them even and stable as the movement occurs.

    Over time, for strength, the knee bend position can be held against the wall for an extended period of time, for 30 seconds to one minute.

    No matter the speed of the movement, always keep the idea of lengthening the entire body in mind. There should always be a stretching and a contracting of muscles. Thank you for the question! I hope this helps you.

  3. Pingback: Better Health by Walking Tall. Building Postural length and muscle awareness. « mind body arts

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