How to De-stress Your Life with PMR

One of my favorite recovery exercises is Progressive Muscular Relaxation. Here’s how I do it, although it’s not the only way it can be done.

1. Lay flat on your back with your arms on your sides. Comfortable, non-binding clothes. Eyes closed.
2. Take deep, slow breaths into your diaphragm. Push stomach out when you inhale.
3. Put your mind/ awareness into your toes and imagine them turning into mist/ steam, so they disappear. When you do this, you completely relax your toes as though you couldn’t tense or move them if you wanted to. Consciously feel your body from the top of your head to the ends of your feet without your toes. You have no toes.
4. Now imagine your feet turning into mist/ steam up to the ankles. Again feel your body from your head to your ankles. In your mind, you now have no feet.
5. Repeat this process for every body part until you have worked your way up to the top of your head.
6. Once you have relaxed/ steamed away every body part, go back down to the toes and re-scan each body part to make sure no tension has come back. Continue this process for as much or little time as you like. I average 10-15 minutes per session. Once a day.

P.M.R. is very similar to meditation or hypnosis. Just like any training, it becomes more natural with time, and instead of your body resisting it, it becomes your comfort zone. PMR is a great exercise to learn how to relax, let go of stress, or recover faster from your training. I have gotten to the point that I can just let go of my entire body at once and get into a state of full relaxation in about 30 seconds.

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