This weeks tip was inspired by my friend Bryan, (thanks!) who sent me the following:
A man is born gentle and weak;
At his death he is hard and stiff.
All things, including the grass and trees,
Are soft and pliable in life;
Dry and brittle in death.
Stiffness is thus a companion of death;
Flexibility is a companion of life.
An army that cannot yield will be defeated.
A tree that cannot bend will crack in the wind.
The hard and stiff will be broken;
The soft and supple will prevail.
Think of how soft, pliable and resilient we were as infants. Our feet were in our mouths. We fell down and bounced back up. Allow yourself the opportunity to be pliant in all that you do; physically, mentally and behaviorally. Our flexibility in life can be our greatest strength.
Maintaining our flexibility is important as we age. Being able to move freely and without pain allows us to lead an active life. Engaging in a daily stretching or yoga program can help keep you flexible or help you gain flexibility. Remember not to bounce or force any position and to hold each pose/position in a comfortably stretched range, never to the point of pain. In order to receive the maximum benefits from a stretch and work at releasing soft tissue restrictions, try holding each pose a minimum of 90 seconds and if possible 2 or 3 minutes as you would a self-treatment technique for MFR.
For a beginnerís guide to flexibility training, see: Beginners Flexibility