Ever notice how animals stretch when they wake up? Take a cue from your pet and keep your back healthy with these morning moves from chiropractor Robert Oexman, director of the Sleep to Live Institute in Joplin, Missouri.
Low back stretch
Bring both knees to your chest by first raising one knee and holding it with both hands, then raising the other to join it. Gently pull both knees toward your chest and breathe. Hold for 20 seconds.
Lie on your back with your knees bent. Tighten your ab muscles so that the small of your back presses flat against the bed or floor. Hold for five seconds, then relax. Repeat three times.
Lying on your back with knees bent, cross left leg over your right. Gently pull your right knee toward your chest, so you feel a stretch in your left glute. Hold for 20 seconds; repeat on the other side.