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The Eagle Project: Part 2

So you’ve got your shoulders all stretched out and you’re ready for the next step, right? Next, we are going to move down the body, to the back. Technically back flexibility is back engagement so I am going show you how to increase that bend and actually give your back a stretch for more mobility. Unlike the shoulders, I recommend stretching your back every other day or every few days, depending on your starting point. When stretching your back don’t push too hard, be patient, and most importantly, don’t forget to breathe!

*Before stretching, make sure you are warmed up!*

Plow

I like to start out with a forward bend. This allows your back to actually stretch and allow for healthier bending. This is also a stretch to do before, in between, and after back bending.

Work on getting the feet to the ground. If you are already there, place your toes on the ground and rock in to those feet to tap in to the full curve of your spine.

8 Pole Arches

1st set (Pictured left) – Start with your back to the pole and all the way up against it. Reach your arms above you and grab the pole. Then push your chest away and thinking of pushing your butt to the pole as much as possible.

Look up past your arms and keep those elbows straight! This is helpful for the actual pose your back and arms will be in while doing the eagle.

2nd set (Pictured right) – stand on the balls of your feet and teach your hands, in a cup grip, directly behind your head or neck. Then push your hips forward, allowing your back to bend in the lower region. Look up to the ceiling and keep those knees straight.

For more bend, walk your hands down the pole when you’re in this position. (Warning: Do not wear socks during this stretch!)

9and10

Partner Backbend

For this stretch you will need a friend!

It’s just like a back bend but you will use your partner’s ankles to push off instead of the ground. This allows for less pressure on the wrist and nice assistance for bending.

When you push up in to the bend, your friend can then reach behind your shoulders and pull you up and in towards their legs. Make sure you keep those heels on the ground! 11and12

Don’t forget to forward bend at the end! Stay tuned for more and happy stretching! 🙂

Leah Franklin
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