One of the best things you can do for your spine at any time, really, but especially after sitting at your machine, or standing at your longarm for long periods of time, is to twist. Twists release tension in the spine. You can twist while standing, or sitting in your chair, but ideally it is good to move. Change your position. Sit on the floor.
|A simple seated spinal twist, stage 2|
The photo above, (thanks, next-door neighbour and good friend, Jude, who took it for me after I taught yoga this morning!) is stage 2 of a seated twist. Stage 1 would be leaving my right foot beside my left thigh, not crossing it over as I have done here. Oops, I forgot to do stage 1!
|Image from Yoga Partout|
The girl on the lower left is in stage 1 of the twist. You can bring the twist into the vertebrae of your neck by bringing your chin in the direction of your shoulder. Think of looking far to the corner of the outside eye. Doing that is a good eye exercise too! Hold the twist for a full 1-2 minutes, breathing slowly and steadily in and out through your nose.
When we twist, we gently compress the discs, à la style of wringing out a dishcloth. Just as we compress a garden hose to control the flow of the water, and then release it, which causes the water to rush out of the hose, the blood will rush through the compressed areas once you untwist. This does a number of good things for our body. If you are breathing slowly and steadily, maybe inhaling and exhaling each to a count of 3 or 4, then you are enriching your blood with oxygen. Once you untwist, the blood, rich in nutrients, nourishes the now decompressed area. Furthermore, the blood rushing through the area flushes out toxins that might have built up there. In this way, you are giving yourself a deep tissue massage. You also have created, at the microscopic level, more space in your spine, which allows for better blood flow. A more limber, blood-flowing-freely human being is generally a happier one. Cool, right?
|Seated spinal twist, stage 3|
You can do a spinal twist reclined too:
|Image from Classic Yoga|
Bernie Clark has a great page on twists on his Yin Yoga site here.
The quilt in the photos of me is my Perky Purses, a great size to take to yoga classes! It's from Pam and Nicky Lintott's book, Layer Cake, Jelly Roll and Charm Quilts.
Since it's Sunday Stash in QBL, here is a photo of 3 fat quarters added this week to my stash.
|My stash is lacking in grey, so these were great additions; should've ironed them first!|