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5 Evening Stretches to Combat Sore Bodies

The end of the workday rolls around, and you’re probably thinking, finally!

You go to stand up and head to the couch, but you’re noticing a few new aches and pains. You’re stiff, and you know it’s likely from sitting all day long without moving (oh, to be human!).

So, what are some sore body stretches you can do to combat these discomforts?

In this article, we’re diving into five stretches to prevent soreness and help you wind down before bed. There’s nothing more aggravating than trying to fall asleep but struggling due to aches and pains.

Let’s do a few quick before-bed stretches and help you ease into that deep sleep as peacefully as possible.

Body Stretches for Soreness & Stiffness from Sitting

Most of these before-bed stretches you can probably do within the comfort of your own bed. Set yourself up for success by planning about 10 minutes before you’re ready to get to sleep. And it’s totally worth it!

These stretches to prevent soreness will help you avoid tossing and turning because your muscles are just too darn tight. So, let’s get to it.

1. The Supine Twist

This isn’t just a great stretch to perform before bed. It can also prevent soreness from sleeping, meaning you could also throw it into your morning routine (if you so choose).

The supine twist opens up your low and mid-back area, as well as your chest. All of these areas come under a ton of strain if you’re sitting most of the day and if you’re not paying proper attention to your posture.

A woman does a supine twist on a yoga mat.

How do you do it?

  • Lie on a yoga mat (or your bed) and bend your knees, keeping your feet flat on the ground.
  • If it’s comfortable, cross your right leg over your left leg.
  • Gently allow both of your legs to fall to the left side.
  • Extend your arms straight out to your side.
  • Pause here for at least 30 seconds (if it’s comfortable, hold this stretch up to a minute or more).
  • Repeat on the opposite side.

2. Child’s Pose

I don’t know about you, but I’m a sucker for the child’s pose stretch. It does so much good, stretching out your back, hips, legs, and ankles. It’s also beneficial for relieving and preventing low back pain (something that about 80% of us will experience at some point in our lives).

A woman does childs pose.

How do you do it?

  • Get on all-fours on the floor or your bed.
  • Line your knees up, so they are just under your hips, and your hands should be just under your shoulders.
  • Slowly bring your buttocks back to rest on your heels (if it’s comfortable).
  • Extend your arms straight out in front of you, or rest them right at your sides.
  • Rest your forehead on the ground or a pillow (whichever is most comfortable again! This is all about your comfort.).
  • Hold for 30 seconds or more. Feel free to stay here for up to 2-3 minutes if it feels good.

Read this article next: 5 Stretches for Persistent Foot & Ankle Pain

3. Sphinx

When performing any sore body stretches, you usually want to balance out each stretch. This is also the idea behind performing the same stretch on each side of your body. It balances the other out.

The sphinx pose, or stretch, offers a balance to the child’s pose stretch.

A man lays on a yoga mat doing sphinx pose.

How do you do it?

  • Start by lying on your belly (this might be best to do on a yoga mat or the floor, since a softer bed may provide too much sinkage).
  • Press your tailbone into your pelvis (toward the floor), and extend your toes behind you.
  • Place your forearms on the ground, with your elbows right under your shoulders.
  • Gently push through your forearms, lifting your chest off the ground.
  • Make sure to keep your hips on the ground throughout this setup.
  • Gaze forward and hold here for 30 seconds or more. You should feel a gentle stretch through your front torso and low back.

4. The Neck Stretch Routine

Alright, this is more of a two-in-one stretch as opposed to a single stretch. Why? Because when we’re sitting all day long working, we often neglect our posture (guilty!). And the neck and shoulder area tends to take the brunt force of this all. Thus, it’s crucial to perform body stretches for soreness of the neck and upper shoulder area.

A woman sits on the floor doing a neck stretch to the left. She uses her hand to gently deepen the stretch.

How do you do it?

  • Sit at the edge of your bed.
  • Place your right hand under your buttocks.
  • Use your left hand and while gazing forward, guide your left ear toward your left shoulder (make sure to keep your shoulders down and relaxed, no shrugging!).
  • Hold here for 30 seconds.
  • Then, gently guide your gaze and head down toward your armpit.
  • Pull slightly on your head (but gently!) so that you feel a stretch more in the back of the right side of the neck.
  • Again, hold for 30 seconds.
  • Repeat this whole sequence on your opposite side.

Check out: 5 Crucial Exercises for Too-Tight Hamstrings

5. Legs Up the Wall Stretch

We weren’t about to leave this stretch routine without some hammie love!

The hamstrings become shortened when we sit for long durations. And this stretch offers up a very passive and relaxing hamstring stretch where you barely have to do any work.

A couple extends their legs up the wall while laying on their bed.

How do you do it?

  • If your bed is against a wall (if not find a spare wall!), scoot yourself toward it.
  • Lying face up, place your legs at a 90-degree angle to your body and straight up on the wall.
  • At this stage, you may want to pull yourself closer to the wall so that you really feel a good stretch through the back of your thighs.
  • Hold here for 30 seconds. If it feels good, feel free to hold it for up to one minute.

Before-Bed Stretches Are Worth It!

Pain is your body’s way of telling you something is wrong. In other words, its cousins, soreness and stiffness, are your body’s way of gently nudging you and letting you know that if this continues, it might start to hurt.

The best thing you can do is be proactive when it comes to your health and your body. Move when you can and stretch when you need to. Listen to what your body is telling you. It really is a truly intelligent machine.

And it’s about time we started tuning into it!

Related article: 5 Sleepy Tips to Wind-Down Before Bed for Your Best Sleep Yet

Krista Bugden

Krista Bugden

"Believing in yourself is really half the battle," says Krista. Anything is possible and you really can achieve anything you set your mind to, is her motto. Physiotherapist, Piano player, skydiver, yogi, adventure traveler and energetic force of positivity, Krista is herself a (delightful) force to be reckoned with! As... Read More

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