Keeping your body flexible helps you to move more easily and maintain stability and balance, which becomes important as you age for injury prevention.
Here are some ways to become more flexible; none of them require exercise machines. Check with your physician first before you attempt these exercises.
Straight leg raises: Lie on your back with your legs flat on the floor. Bring one leg straight up as far as possible and hold for a few seconds. Lower that leg and repeat with the other leg. Then do same exercise again, but raise both legs at the same time.
Shoulder Lift: Raise your right shoulder toward your ear, keeping your head straight. Hold for a few seconds and lower. Repeat with your left shoulder.
Do simple stretching exercises such as neck stretches. Bend your head to one side until a mild stretch is felt, hold 10 seconds and reverse.
For your upper body, bring one arm across your chest, grasp your elbow and pull your arm towards your chest. Hold this position for a few seconds. Repeat with the other arm. Now, clasp your hands behind your back and straighten arms.
For your lower body, do a hamstring stretch: sit on the floor, straighten one leg, and place your other foot against the thigh of the straightened leg. Bend forward keeping your back straight. Hold for a few seconds, switch legs and repeat.
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