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How Did You Get So Flexible?

As a dance fitness instructor and yoga teacher, one of the most common questions I get is, "How did you get so flexible?" The answer is, I practiced and worked towards it. It is the same with any skill, if you want to improve you have to practice that skill and be consistent with your practice.

 

As a dancer I began working on my flexibility at a young age, but the reason I am still flexible is because I have stayed consistent at my flexibility practice. I practice yoga, dance, barre, and religiously stretch after being active.

 

The easiest way to incorporate a flexibility practice into your daily routine is to always stretch out the muscles that you worked at the end of your fitness regimen. Stretching at the end of a workout helps to reduce unnecessary soreness and to prevent unnecessary injuries. At the end of your workout your muscles are warm and plyable and it is the perfect time to take advantage of it. I also love that stretching is something that you can do while you are enjoying something else, for example, you could stretch while watching your favorite nightly show, while reading your favorite book, while scrolling through instagram, or while online shopping for some new Sweat NSK activewear! I used to stretch while doing homework!

 

Now that you have a few ideas on how to begin a flexibility practice, I want to give you a few of my favorite stretches.

Here are 5 of my favorite daily stretches:

 Seated forward fold

Seated-forward-pose

 
I love this stretch because it lengthens the entire backside of your body; stretching your neck, back, hips, hamstrings, calves, and achilles.  
(Jillian is seen here wearing the XO long sleeve top and Vie Active ombre leggings)
 
Butterfly or bound angle pose
Butterfly-bound-angle-pose
     
    This yoga pose is great because it opens up your inner thighs and stretches your outer hips simultaneously. I like to do it sitting upright and then leaning forward first with a flat back and then again with a rounded spine. 
     
    Single legged pigeon pose
      Single Legged pigeon pose
       
      This yoga pose is an amazing hip opener. Targeting both the hip flexor on one side and the hip rotator on the other side. Be sure to practice both the right and left sides! 
      (Jillian is seen here wearing a Zoe Karssen top and Ultracor leggings)
       
      Low lunge with a twist 
      low-lunge-twist
         
        This stretch is great because it releases tension in the back while opening the hips and releasing the quadriceps. Twisting is also great for your digestive system, just make sure you do it after about two hours of eating and to of course do both the right and left side! 
        (Jillian is seen here wearing a Lanston cropped tank top and Vimmia camo leggings)
         
        Cow face pose
        cow-face-pose
           
          A great yoga pose to stretch not only the chest and triceps, but also your ankles, hips, and thighs. If you struggle to connect the hands behind your back feel free to use a small hand towel for help. If you struggle to cross the knees just sit in a comfortable cross legged position. 
           

          Now that you know some of my favorite stretches I would love to know some of yours! Comment below with your favorite stretch or yoga pose or find me on Instagram @sequinjillian and tell me there! If you want to stretch and workout with me in person you can find me teaching at Body by Simone and Hot 8 Yoga. Hope to see you soon!  

          (Call the store at (310 476-4636 to order what Jillian is wearing or email us at info@sweatnsk.com)