Stretching before bedtime reduces muscle tension and increases blood circulation throughout the entire body, calming the nervous system and helping to dissipate stress, promoting relaxation.
Controlling stress through the practice of stretching is beneficial for insomnia and sleep issues, as stress causes our adrenal glands release excess cortisol (stress hormone), which is manageable in short term, however, chronic stress and constant worry leads to health risks such as weakened immune system, hypertension, insomnia, elevated blood glucose levels, weight gain and more...
The calming effects of stretching helps disrupt this cycle, so our sleep improves, and our systems will be able to regulate and repair, resulting in improved overall health.
Beneficial stretch sequence to try before bed:
Child’s Pose, Forward fold(standing or seated), Legs on the wall, Open butterfly chest opener and Savasana.
For best results, stay in each stretch for minimum 2 minutes, and focus on deep nourishing nasal breathing.
Please note: if you have limited flexibility or are a novice to stretching, be kind to yourself and start gently - don’t force any stretch and build up slowly over time.