Wellness

Progressive Muscle Relaxation

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Being overwhelmed by the everyday stressors of life along with experiencing a familiar knot in the stomach and the grinding of teeth, it may be time to take back control by learning progressive muscle relaxation.

Progressive muscle relaxation is easy to learn and once feeling that overall stress-free relaxed body, daily progressive muscle relaxation will be something to enjoy. No need worrying about not being able to do it right away as it is important to remember the old adage, practice makes perfect.

Along with doing progressive muscle relaxation there are several other ways of reducing stress levels like, exercising, eating healthy, thinking and being positive, laughing at mistakes, and most importantly putting aside pride and asking for help from family and friends.

Benefits:

  • Practicing PMR will help bring balance to life
  • Lowering blood pressure
  • Regulating the heart rate
  • Reducing levels of stress hormones
  • Helping to reduce anxiety
  • Helping with migraines
  • Improving digestion
  • Reduction of muscle tension
  • Helps with chronic pain

How to do progressive muscle relaxation:

Find a quiet place either sitting or lying down, whatever is most comfortable. The goal is to feel the tension drain from the body and be replaced by the calm and relaxation which will be achieved by doing progressive muscle relaxation.

Muscle relaxation is about tensing a group of muscles, holding it for 5 to 10 seconds and then releasing the muscles. Tensing groups of muscles will provide maximum benefit.

The following are groups of muscles to focus on:

  • Feet and legs
  • Hips and buttocks
  • Chest and abdomen
  • Shoulders, neck and arms
  • Face

For each muscle group, inhale a deep breath, tighten a the muscles, hold and then release the tensed muscles and exhale.

Learning the art of progressive muscle relaxation can empower an individual as they start to feel more relaxed each day. It does take time to be able to fully feel the benefits though, so it would be best to do it twice a day. Individuals should be patient and remember slow and steady wins the race.