advertisement
10 August 2010

Progressive muscle relaxation

This exercise helps to ease tension and keep you in a relaxed state. Using relaxation skills such as this one can improve your state of mind.

This exercise helps to ease tension and keep you in a relaxed state. Using relaxation skills such as this one can improve your state of mind if you take the time to learn and hone these skills.

  • Choose a quiet room and find a comfortable chair to sit in. If you want to, you could play soothing, relaxing music in the background.
  • Rest your hands in your lap and your feet on the floor. Make yourself as comfortable as possible. Use extra cushions if need be or loosen any tight clothing.
  • Take a deep breath, letting it out slowly.
  • Extend one arm in front of you. Make a tight fist and tense the muscles as hard as you can. Hold for a count of five. Concentrate on how tense the hand feels.
  • Relax your hand partly. Clench it again for a count of five. Notice and remember the difference in sensation between the clenched and unclenched muscles.
  • Now release the tension completely, allowing your hand to feel completely relaxed. Take a deep breath and exhale slowly.
  • Repeat this sequence for the other hand, then for your arms, shoulders, neck and facial muscles. Take deep breaths between each muscle group until the entire upper body is relaxed.
  • Using the same routine of tensing and then relaxing muscles, go on to your stomach, buttocks, legs and feet.
  • After tensing and relaxing your entire body, close your eyes and sit quietly for at least five minutes. Breathe deeply and concentrate on a pleasant thought or peaceful scene.

Related Articles
Post a question to Cybershrink.
Relaxation exercises that work

 
NEXT ON HEALTH24X
advertisement

Read Health24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
0 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Live healthier

Lifestyle »

E-cigarettes: Here are five things to know

E-cigarettes have become hugely popular in the past decade, but a rash of vaping-linked deaths and illnesses in the US is feeding caution about a product that's already banned in some places.

Allergy »

Ditch the itch: Researchers find new drug to fight hives

A new drug works by targeting an immune system antibody called immunoglobulin E, which is responsible for the allergic reaction that causes hives.