Increasing your flexibility helps prevent joint stiffness, improves balance and posture, and makes moving easier. When doing these stretches, move slowly and smoothly. Breathe out (exhale) gently through pursed lips during the effort phase of each stretch.

Inhaling through the nose and exhaling through pursed lips makes breathing easier during exercise. To do pursed-lip breathing:

  1. Relax your neck and shoulder muscles. Inhale slowly through your nose for at least 2 counts.
  2. Pucker your lips as if to blow out a candle. Exhale slowly and gently through your pursed lips for at least twice as long as you inhaled.

Source: fairviewmnhs.org/patient-education/88813

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