Sarah Cowley – Setting up your day with a morning mobility routine

Beautiful young woman doing push-ups at home

Starting your day with the intention to succeed is a great platform to spring from. Getting going in your rhythm with a consistent morning exercise routine is the perfect way to make big gains through small steps over time.

I don’t really enjoy early starts, but know that I need to set my alarm earlier if I want to get this in before work starts.

I head to my living room and get into a minimum of 15 minutes of mobility and core work. It’s nothing too vigorous but it’s good opportunity to wake up through opening up my body. It’s also a time for me to prioritise myself, which many of us in our busy lives simply don’t do. I would encourage you to embrace this opportunity to do something for yourself at the start of the day.

A lot of us sit for the majority of the day. As I spoke about posture in last month’s Pulse, my morning mobility routine is one strategy I have for maintaining my postural integrity.

My own morning routine used to be based on the “Limber 11” on YouTube, which is a range of different mobility exercises. There are heaps of different options online, which I would encourage you to check out. I pick and choose the exercises I want to focus on and generally mix it up on a day-to-day basis.

Some of my key exercises are “3 point kneeling with thoracic rotations”, which is a great one for someone in a desk job. As is “cat and camel” movements in 4 point kneeling to keep your spinal mobility. For hip mobility I like to do alternating “mountain climbers” and “3 point hip circles” both clockwise and anticlockwise. I find hip range of motion exercises really good to get the blood pumping first up in the morning. “Cossack squats” are another good option for ankle range, hip range and maintaining good posture. I like doing some form of abdominal work whether it is a side plank or some lateral sit-ups. It’s also really important to include some back extension work to open out your front following core work.

You can use equipment to help you iron out your creases in your routine as well. A foam roller is a great option to roll out your larger muscle groups such as your gluts and quads. Like wise to do some leg float exercises to a core workout.

My fifteen-minute morning routine really helps me to maintain my flexibility and is a great kick-start to the day. It’s like brushing my teeth for me and I actually enjoy getting it done. Little by little you will see the benefit of rising a little earlier to care for your body. It will make a difference to your gym experience in the day. If you hit the gym first thing I would recommend some mobility and core work to get you going. Again it doesn’t have to be outrageous but start by building up to set you up. It’s really up to you to prioritise what you would like to get out of this time but I strongly suggest a flexibility, posture and core focus.