Top Five Yoga Moves to Alleviate Pain Muscle Tightness

I have yet to meet a surfer who doesn’t complain about tight hips and hamstrings, pain in the lower back, shoulders, and neck region. Surfing works very specific muscle groups and the best way to get better at surfing is, well, surfing. Surfers focus mainly on their pull muscles as they paddle for waves, with necks lifted and backs arched, which tends to wreak havoc on these muscle groups. Surfing is addicting and is good for the mind, body, and soul, but what can a surfer do to alleviate some of the muscular pain that comes with catching waves? Yoga is a good start. Here are the top five yoga moves that will surely help alleviate pain muscle tightness:

Downward Facing Dog

    Directions:
  • 1. Start on your hands and knees in a table-top position
  • 2. Spread your palms and tuck your toes under lifting your knees off the floor and your sit bones towards the sky.
  • 3. Push your thighs back and heels towards the floor and try to straighten your knees (if you can’t, a small bend is totally fine, don’t push it past your limits)
  • 4. Keep space between your shoulders and neck. (Don’t scrunch your shoulders up to your ears, focus on pushing them down away from your ears).
    Benefits:
  • 1. Great stretch for the hamstrings, calves, shoulders, and back
  • 2. Strengthens the legs, core, shoulders, and arms
  • 3. Calms the mind

Pigeon Pose

    Directions:
  • 1. From Downward Facing Dog, lift your right leg up into the air behind you, swing it back forward with your knee bent
  • 2. Gently place your knee on the ground between your hands with your knee towards your right hand, and your foot towards your left hand
  • 3. If flexibility permits, walk your hands forward. Keep back straight and feel free to slowly bend over your knee with a flat back
  • 4. Repeat on left leg
    Benefits:
  • 1. Alleviates lower back pain
  • 2. Stretches and opens up hips and glutes

Ragdoll Pose

    Directions:
  • 1. Stand with your feet hip-width apart, bringing your hands to your hips
  • 2. With a slight bend in your knees, bend forward at the hips with a flat back
  • 3. Cross your arms and grab hold of opposite elbows
  • 4. Feel free to move your body gently from side to side to release any tension left in the spine. Nod the head yes and no to release tension in the neck area
    Benefits:
  • 1. Stretches calves, neck, shoulders, and hips
  • 2. Helps relieve tension

Extended Triangle Pose

    Directions:
  • 1. Step your feet about 4 to 5 feet apart with heels aligned
  • 2. Turn your front foot 90 degrees so toes are pointing forward
  • 3. Pivot your back foot about 45 degrees inward
  • 4.Raise your arms to shoulder height, parallel to the floor with palms facing down
  • 5. Reach your front arm forward, shift back hip back, and fold forward
  • 6. Place your front hand on your outer shin or ankle, depending on flexibility
  • 7. Turn your head to gaze at the arm extended toward to sky
  • 8. Switch sides
    Benefits:
  • 1. Stretches and strengthens the thighs, knees, and ankles
  • 2. Stretches hips, hamstrings, shoulders, chest, and spine
  • 3. Improves digestion

Spinal Twist

    Directions:
  • 1. Begin by lying comfortably on the back
  • 2. Bend knees into your chest and extend your arms to the sides in a “T” formation with palms facing up
  • 3. Drop both bent knees to the right as you gaze towards your left shoulder
  • 4. Keep knees and feet close together while also keeping your shoulders pressed on the ground
  • 5. Feel free to use your hand as an added weight on your knees pushing them towards the ground
  • 6. Come back to center and switch sides
    Benefits:
  • 1. Alleviates back pain
  • 2. Stimulates digestion and circulation
  • 3. Tones abdominal muscles
  • 4. Stretches hips and glutes

We highly recommend doing all of these moves at least three times a week in order to alleviate tension in those surfing muscles. Happy yoga!

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