Healthy Sleeping Habits

4 Mobility Moves To Do in Bed for Better Sleep, According to a Chiropractor

Photo: Getty Images/ Goodboy Picture Company
In a world where you may be working from home, one in which fancy pajamas count as business casual, the idea of not getting out of bed whenever possible is highly appealing. But as most experts will tell you, using your bed as a desk, couch, and dining table is not great for your health for a variety of reasons, including making it harder to get quality zzzs when the time comes. Luckily, chiropractor and fitness coach Julia Morgan, DC, has four mobility moves for better sleep. Not only can you do them in bed—she recommends that you do.

In a post on Instagram, Dr. Morgan shares that her favorite form of recovery is high-quality sleep. "It’s such a simple way to improve our quality of health," she writes. To help achieve the elusive chanteuse that is solid shut-eye, she recommends doing these four mobility exercises.

4 mobility moves for better sleep

1. Seated Cat/Cow

Sit cross legged (or on the edge of your bed) with your hands resting on your knees. Begin to alternate between arching your back, letting your gaze rise up toward the ceiling, and rounding it, drawing your chin toward your chest, articulating your spine and mobilizing the muscles in your back and core. Continue for 30 seconds to one minute.

2. Side-to-side bending with roll through

Start seated with your legs crossed or hanging off the edge of your bed if that’s more comfortable and hands by your sides. Reach your right arm up overhead and side bend to the left, allowing your left elbow to bend and rest your left forearm on your bed and mobilizing your spine, as well as all the muscles the run up the sides of your torso, plus your obliques. Switch sides, and continue alternating from side to side—for an added stretch, fold forward and circle around from side to side, walking your hands across the top of your bed in a semicircle as you switch, rather than staying upright. Continue for 30 seconds to one minute.

3. Elevated thoracic extension

If you’re familiar with child’s pose in yoga, this is the same thing, but your arms are propped up on your pillow in order to allow you to deepen the stretch in your mid-back which is an area with limited mobility. Start by stacking two pillows in front of you and sit on your shins in front of them, allowing your hands to rest on top. With extended arms, fold forward and allow your chest to sink toward your bed, feeling a stretch in your mid-back and under your armpits. Allow your head to hang heavy and hold for 30 seconds to one minute.

4. Butterfly

Start in a seated position with your legs crossed so that your right knee is resting on top of your left, legs bent, and feet resting outside of either hip. (If you have tight hips, this may not be comfortable or accessible, in which case, sit with your legs bent, knees wide, and soles of the feet together in front of you. The closer your heels are to your hips, the deep the stretch, so move them in or out accordingly.) Slowly hinge forward from your hips with a flat back—option to use your hands to gently press your feet (knees if soles are together) down toward the bed below you to deepen the hip stretch.

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