This stretch is useful for those who are stuck in a hunched or sitting position for prolonged periods of time. This is great for drivers, desk jockeys, students and couch potatoes. There are deep muscles in the abdomen that connect from the lower ribs and middle back muscles towards the anterior pelvic girdle and hip. If you are experiencing lower back/buttock and hip pain - the abs are probably the cause.
How is it done?
1. To begin the pose lie flat on the floor, face down and place your hands directly underneath the shoulders. Ensure your thighs are parallel to each other and your elbows are tucked in close to your body.
2. Tense your legs, contract your thighs, and press the feet firmly into the floor.
3. As you take a full breath in, begin to straighten your arms and lift the chest. Let your body dictate a comfortable height for you and ensure your pelvis stays connected to the floor.
4. Relax and hold the stretch upwards of 40 seconds to 2 minutes. Stay in cobra for however long your body requires, but be sure to maintain relaxed breathing.
5. When you’re ready to come out of the stretch, exhale and fold down towards the floor. Loosen and slacken those tense muscles that got you into the cobra position, namely the legs, feet and shoulders.
This video was hunted down by one of my clients. That person has tremendous neck issues and this has helped immensely. They do it on a daily basis (especially before a massage session) and the muscles in the neck feel great.