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Five Exercises to Help Keep Your Mind and Body Happy

Stuck at Home? Don't Forget to Stretch and Get Moving!

A new challenge for families during these times is keeping their children active and engaged. Laura Lewis Hollingshead, CTRS, TRS knows that the best motivation for getting kids moving is to make it fun. When she saw the stretches published by the rehabilitation team at Shriners Hospitals for Children — Spokane, she loved the nature theme they offered with stretches.

“Moving your body is not only important,” said Laura, “it can be really fun too!” She recognized that while these stretches can be adapted to many ability levels, considering children in wheelchairs who may find some of these stretches difficult, she has another solution. “If these stretches are too hard, put on some music or even nature sounds and move your body.”

Enjoy these stretches with Fezzy from the Spokane Shriners Hospital rehabilitation team:

Hey kids! Did you know that stretching can help your mind and body relax? Regular stretching not only helps increase your flexibility, but it can also calm your mind. The Spokane Shriners Hospital rehabilitation therapy team crafted five at-home stretches to help keep your body and mind active. Follow along with Eleanor and Fezzy as they show you step-by-step directions:

1. Seed to Flower:
Pretend you are a little tiny seed in the ground and squat on the floor with arms folded over your head into a tight little ball. Have your parent pretend to water you (the seed), then slowly stand up and hold your arms over your head to become a beautiful flower.

2. Tree Pose:
Stand with both feet together with your arms straight over your head and sway in the wind like a giant tree during a storm. Too easy? Try this on one foot, or with one foot directly in front of the other. Still too easy? Try bringing one foot up to your knee.

3. Rain Pose:
Start with making “rain” come down with your hands. Bring your hands up over your head and down to your waist, then bend over to have the rain touch the ground.

4. Bird Pose:
Place a chair in front of you for balance and hold your leg out behind you. Try to lift your hands off the chair and balance. Feeling good? Try to do this without the chair. Still feeling really good? Attempt to do this while extending your arms out to the side like a bird.

5. Butterfly Pose:
Sit on the floor with your knees bent and place your feet together. Let your knees fall to the side, then bring your knees up and down like butterfly wings.

After your kids are stretched and feeling good, Laura recommends the book, Giraffes Can’t Dance by Giles Andreae. “It is a great story about how we all move a little different from each other. Have fun and keep moving!”

Seed to flower poseTree poseRain poseBird poseButterfly pose

Stretches with Fezzy

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