March Mat-ness Challenge Day 29

Side Bend and Side Bend Prep

Side Bend is such a beautiful exercise.  It looks elegant and graceful all while strengthening your obliques, inner thighs and more!

For both exercises, start seated on one hip, facing the side.  Your legs will be bent with your top foot right in front of the bottom leg’s ankle.  Bottom arm will support the body, but make sure you are not sinking into that shoulder.  You should feel as if you are lifting up away from the mat before you even start.  Your top arm should be reaching to the side, palm up.

For the Prep, inhale and lift your hip off the mat by putting weight into your bottom knee.  Squeeze your buns and push them forward as you lift up.  As you do this, reach your top arm over your head.  On your exhale, control the return of your hip to the mat so that you are not flopping back down.  Lower your arm to the side.

For the full Side Bend, instead of keeping your bottom knee down, on your inhale, squeeze your legs together and lift up into a side plank but reach up and over your head allowing your body to bend to the side making an arc shape with your body.  On your exhale, control your return to the mat into your starting position and bring your arm back to the side.

Perform 3-5 repetitions on each side.

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