If you've resorted to practically living in high heels just to add some inches to your frame, you and your feet are most likely not happy campers. Consider ditching the high heels and start stretching on a regular basis. Various stretches and yoga poses can lengthen your muscles and combat the unavoidable impact of gravity. These stretches can make you look leaner, taller and more elegant, and additionally, they improve your posture, flexibility and balance.
Hanging may seem like an old wives' tale, but it actually does have some merit when it comes to increasing your height. Everyday your body is limited by gravity as you move around in an upright position. Your spine and joints become compressed over time. By simply hanging for 30 seconds at a time and taking weight off of your back and lower body, you can reduce this compression a little bit every day. All you need is a horizontal bar that is high enough for your body to fully extend with your knees slightly bent. Grasp the bar with your palms facing out and hands close together as you relax your shoulders and arms.
Dry Land Swim
The dry land swim exercise, also called the alternate leg kick, is an exercise that help strengthen and decompress your spine and lower back. Lie on the floor face down with your arms and legs fully extended. With your palm down, raise your left arm off the ground and extend it straight out. At the same time lift and extend your right leg off of the ground as far as possible. Hold the position for several seconds and slowly lower your arm and leg. Repeat the stretch with your right arm and left leg. The repeat the exercises several more time until you have reached a goal of 24 total seconds of stretching.
The cobra exercise is a yoga pose also known as Bhujangasana. This exercise will strengthen your back and arms and stretch out your spine, helping to decompress the vertebrae. Start out by lying down on the floor face down with your hands palm down under your shoulders. Slowly arch your back and bend upward, leading with your chin. Arch back as far as you can while keeping your hands and pelvis on the floor. Hold the pose for 5 to 30 seconds and slowly return to the original position. Focus on breathing and relaxation during the stretch. Repeat the exercise a few more times as desired.
The forward bend exercise will help to stretch your calves, hamstrings, hips and back. It will also help decompress your spine, and add some length to your height. Start out in the standing position, legs spread wide. Raise your hands above your head and overlap your hands. Slowly bend over and touch the floor between your feet and then slowly return to the starting position. Repeat the move 10 times. The wider your legs are, the easier the exercise will be. Adjust based on your flexibility. The more you perform the stretch, the more difficult you should try to make it.
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This article reflects the views of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the views of Jillian Michaels or JillianMichaels.com.