Yup, you read that right: "Shower Yoga". It's how I begin my days. And it not only gets all of my stiff joints and muscles moving after a night of sleep, but it is exhilarating as well. Here's how it goes: First I take a nice, very warm shower and then turn the nozzle down so it no longer hits me. I slide over to the other side of the shower and begin my stretches. I reach my hands high over my head, interlocking them, and bend back as far as I can. I actually bend back until I hear (and feel) my back crack. It is a wonderful feeling - the best! Then I put my feet about shoulder width apart and reach my hands over my head again (interlocking them) and bend from the waist - first to the right and then to the left, holding each stretch for 10 seconds Then I reach my arms out to the sides as far as they can go and hold that pose for 10 seconds, after which I pull them into the center with my hands, forearms and elbows fused together. I hold that for 10 seconds as well. I then repeat the entire sequence, holding each pose for 7 seconds. I Then reach my hands up high and bend over, touching my toes or grabbing my ankles. I do that 4 times and hold it 5 seconds each time. Finally, I do my "Tree". I begin with my left leg, placing it high on my thigh as I balance on my right foot and hold it for 60 seconds. I repeat on the left side and then I'm done! (Note: the shower is running the entire time, which makes the experience especially refreshing and, well, that's the exhilarating part!). And I usually pray when I hold the Tree pose, so that part may take longer than 2 minutes).
I encourage you to try this. You can vary your stretches, especially if you are a Yoga aficionado. Just make sure that you engage all of your muscles and that you DO NOT SLIP OR FALL. It is a wonderful way to start your day. I have to confess that I suffer from pretty bad arthritis, especially in my lower back and hips. And since I've been doing Shower Yoga, I have experienced much relief. I'm not saying its a cure-all, but it's worked for me!