I looooove stretching. I’m known to stretch at my desk, do various yoga poses when I lay on the beach, and shoot my arms into the air then pull them down my back as I walk down the street. It simply feels AMAZING. I go to yoga every Monday, and I’ve consistently noticed that the more I’d stretched the week before, the more bendy I am in class, and the better yoga session I have.

New York–based yoga instructor Janna Leyde shares 5 targeted moves for relieving stress during the day, all amenable to your desk-bound existence. Give it a shot – it’s great for your system, and maybe you’ll be slightly more bendy on Monday too. This mini sesh incorporates all elements of a full-fledged yoga practice (except inversions).

1. Breathe in and raise both hands (palms up) over your head. As you exhale, grab your right wrist and pull, leaning to the left. Repeat on the other side.

2. Breathe in and raise both hands (palms up) over your head. Exhale and stick your chest out, spreading your collar bones as you lean into a baby backbend—whether you’re sitting or standing.

3. Stand and lean over bent legs (unless your hamstrings are elastic, in which case, keep your legs straight). Bend at the hips and lay your belly and chest on your thighs. The contact is what provides the most stress release, so that’s important. If you can’t stand, you can do this pose while sitting, too.

4. Do a quick tree pose—standing with one leg bent and the sole of your foot planted on the inner thigh of your other leg (or your calf, depending on flexibility). Don’t just do the pose—take a break from your day to think about what kind of tree you are feeling like. Are your arms steady at your chest, blowing in the wind, stretched above your head?

5. Twists—sitting in your chair, inhale and place your right hand on your left thigh and your left arm on the back of your chair. Exhale and twist behind you. Repeat on the other side.

Originally featured on Healing Lifestyles.

Photo via fitceleb