These are a few exercises Jan Waters, owner/teacher of Banyan Tree Pilates and Yoga
suggests to keep your lower body in shape and flexible.
LEG SWINGS (DYNAMIC STRETCHING)
Stand on a pad/mat 1or 2 inches high. Stand on
one leg, swing your opposite leg forward and back
10 times. Then, swing your leg sideways crossing
midline then out 10 times. Lastly, swing your leg
at a 45-degree angle 10 times.Repeat other leg.
While standing, bend your knee and grab the top
of your foot with the same side hand, pull your
heel toward your glutes, slightly pushing your hips
forward, keeping your knee pointing toward the
ground. Hold for 20 seconds. Repeat other leg. If
needed, hold on to a back of chair with other hand
90/90 KNEELING HIP LUNGE STRETCH
Starting in a kneeling position keeping your hips,
knee and ankle in a 90 degree position. One leg
forward in a lunge. Bring the hips forward feeling
a slight stretch in front of your thigh. Bring the arm
overhead on the same side with knee on ground.
Hold for 20 seconds. Repeat other side.
FIGURE 4 STRETCH
Lie faceup and bend both knees so feet are resting
flat on floor in front of you hip-distance apart.
Arms straight by your side. Lift one leg and cross
the ankle over the thigh just above the knee.
Reach hands through and grab back of left thigh,
lift and pull left leg in towards chest. Hold for 20
seconds. Switch legs.
Sit on the floor with the knees bent, externally
rotated with the soles of the feet together. Hold onto
the ankles and press the elbows into the sides of the
shins while flexing forward.
42 GASPARILLA ISLAND January/February 2019
Lie on your back with arms out to the sides.
Drop the knees to one side and look to the
other side. Switch sides.
Lie on your back with your knees bent and feet
flat on the floor. Extend one leg toward the
ceiling and hold onto the leg wherever the
flexibility of the leg will allow. Keep the sit bone
reaching toward the floor and the torso long.
You can also use a strap or towel by placing the
foot in the middle of the strap while holding the
ends with both hands. Hold 20 seconds,
release slightly, then bend and straighten a few
times. Repeat other leg.
Sit on the floor with the legs open wide in front
in full straddle position. Slightly bend the knees
if necessary. Place your hands in front of the torso
and flex the hips to lower the upper body toward
the ground. Keep the back flat.
HIP FLEXOR STRETCH
Lie on your back. Place a small ball or foam
roller under the sacrum area. Draw one knee in
toward the chest and extend the other leg out
away from the hips. Switch legs.
HEEL INTO WALL
Lie on the floor on your stomach and place your
forehead on your hands. Bend your knee to 90
degrees and rest the outside of your foot against
a wall. Use your hip muscles to gently push the
outer part of your foot into the wall. Hold for 6
seconds, relax and push in again. Repeat 6
times. Switch to other leg and repeat.