Musicians' Wellness & Anxiety Management

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10 Essential Poses For Musicians (Part 2)

Last week, I walked you through the first 5 essential poses for musicians in Part 1 of this two-part series. This week I'm sharing 5 more with you that I've chosen that specifically cater to our lifestyle as musicians!


Each post includes 5 different poses that you could either do individually to target a specific area of your body, or do together as a full-body warm-up. Remember to keep your breath flowing long and deep as you practice these poses.


Just like in Part 1, I take you through how to do these poses safely step-by-step and offer several variations and modifications for each so that you can make these work for YOU and YOUR body. These poses are beginner friendly, and can be done at your desk, in the practice room, backstage before rehearsals or concerts, in the recording studio… the possibilities are endless!


**Disclaimer**

Avoid these exercises if you are already injured unless your medical doctor gives you the “okay.” If you experience any sort of pain while doing these exercises, STOP IMMEDIATELY. You can lessen the intensity (make smaller circles or lessen the range of motion for example) or just discontinue altogether.

6. FORWARD FOLD/RAG DOLL



Benefits:

  • Stretches the backs of the legs.

  • Releases the low back, neck and shoulders.

  • Increases circulation to the brain.

How to do it:

  1. Stand with your feet either together or hip width apart with your toes pointing forward.

  2. Exhale and let your upper body soften down.

  3. Either grab opposite elbows releasing any tension in your shoulders, or let your arms soften down allowing your hands to rest on the floor.

  4. Reach the tailbone up as your feet and heels ground down.

Variations/modifications:

  • Bend your knees deeply allowing your upper body to rest on your thighs.

  • You don’t have to touch the floor by any means, but if you want extra support grab yoga blocks or something similar and use them to essentially bring the floor up to you.


7. EXTENDED PUPPY POSE



Benefits:

  • Opens the chest, shoulders and upper back

  • Stretches the feet

  • Decompresses the low back

  • Increases circulation to the brain.

How to do it:

  1. Start in table-top on all fours with your toes tucked under.

  2. Walk your hands forward while keeping your hips stacked over your knees.

  3. Press your hands into the floor and spread your shoulder blades away from each other.

  4. Let the chest soften down making a line from the crown of your head to your tailbone.

Variations/modifications:

  • Put a folded blanket or towel under your knees if they are sensitive.

  • For a deeper stretch in the shoulders, place your elbows on a yoga block or stable stack of books, press your palms together and allow them to soften down toward the nape of your neck.

  • Rest your forehead under a yoga block or sturdy object.


8. EAGLE ARMS



Benefits:

  • Deeply stretches the upper back and shoulders

How to do it:

  1. Reach your arms straight out in front of you with your palms facing down.

  2. Cross your right arm over your left and bring the back of your hands toward each other.

  3. Stay here with the backs of your hands together, or wrap your right hand around the pinky side of your left hand and work toward bringing your palms together.

  4. Press your forearms together and stretch your arms forward.

  5. Spread the shoulders apart slightly.

  6. Do the other side the same way with the left arm crossing over the right.

Variations/modifications:

  • Instead of bringing your hands together, bring them anywhere between the elbows to the opposite shoulder. Press your arms together and stretch your arms forward.

  • Interlace your fingers in front of your chest with your palms facing you. Straighten your arms and stretch them away from you while spreading through the shoulder blades.


9. DOUBLE PIGEON



Benefits:

  • Deeply stretches the hips

  • Decompresses the low back

How to do it:

  1. Sit comfortably on the floor. Prop your hips up on the edge of a blanket or towel if you notice that you’re rounding the lower back.

  2. Bring your right shin out in front of you so that it’s parallel to your body. Keep your feet flexed to protect your knees.

  3. Stack your left shin on top of your right. Line up the edge of your feet to the top of your thighs.

  4. Stay up right if that’s enough of a stretch. To intensify it, hinge forward reaching your chest toward your shins.

  5. Uncross your legs and switch to the other side.

Variations/modifications:

  • Sit in a chair with your feet on the floor (if your feet don’t reach the floor you can prop them up with books, yoga blocks or something similar). Cross your right ankle either over your other ankle or your opposite thigh with your foot flexed. Stay upright right or hinge forward reaching your chest forward.

  • Place a yoga block or folded/rolled blanket under your one or both knees.


10. SUPINE TWISTS



Benefits:

  • Open the chest and shoulders.

  • Lengthens the back muscles.

  • Stretches the hips.

  • Massages internal organs and stimulates digestion.

How to do it:

  1. Start on your back with your knees bent and feet on the floor.

  2. Draw your knees in toward your chest.

  3. Squeeze your inner thighs together and take your arms out wide.

  4. Keep the shoulders pressing down as you let your legs fall to one side.

  5. Keep squeezing the inner thighs together and work to keep your hips stacked on top of each other.

  6. Untuck your shoulders, and take your head to the opposite side if it’s comfortable to do so. (If not, keep your head in a neutral position.)

  7. Use your core to draw your knees back to center and repeat on the other side.

Variations/modifications:

  • Support your knees with a yoga block, book or other sturdy object if your knees don’t rest fully on the floor.

  • Put a folded or rolled blanket or towel between your knees.

  • Sit in a cross-legged position. Inhale to lengthen through your spine and twist over to one side. Place your back hand on the ground, block or book and bring your other hand to the opposite knee.

Now that you're armed with these 10 essential poses (check out Part 1 if you haven't yet), try setting a timer for 3-5 minutes to practice a few of these poses and create the perfect routine for you, your body, and your schedule!


If this post resonates with you let me know below, and SHARE with anyone you think might needs this!


If you have any questions, or topics you'd love for me to talk about send me a message and let's chat!


For more inspiration and wellness tips join me on Instagram @caitlinroseflute!

Hey friends, I'm Caitlin! 

I've been in your shoes and have walked for miles––now I'm here to help!

I'm a flutist and yogi who's here

to teach you how you can live a more fulfilling and sustainable musical life through yoga, meditation and mindfulness. 

Read my story here!

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