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GOOD FORM

Upper-body booster

March 12, 2007|Karen Voight | Karen Voight can be reached at kvoightla@aol.com.

Many of us spend more time focusing on lower-body strength than on upper-body strength. This can cause the lower half of our bodies to overwork as a way of compensating for a weak upper body. It also leads to stiff shoulders, tense necks and weak arms. This simple move can be very helpful in developing balanced strength and flexibility. But watch out: It's harder than it looks. Practice patience and persistence while mastering this move.

Karen Voight

1 Begin by sitting on a flat padded surface with your arms behind you and your fingers pointed toward your feet. Bend your knees enough to have your feet flat on the floor. Place your feet parallel to each other with your knees hip-width apart. On an exhale, raise your pelvis off the floor, pointing your tailbone toward the back of your knees. Pause for a few breaths, pressing your feet into the floor.

2 Keeping your hips raised, with your shoulders and hips level, shift your weight over your left foot. Slowly extend your right leg straight out in front of you. Do not allow your hips to drop or tilt toward one side. Pause for a few breaths, then return your right foot to the floor, shift your weight toward your right foot and extend your left leg. Pause for a moment then lower your pelvis toward the floor, rest and repeat two more times.

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