Just like Varun Dhawan, if you are also dealing with tight and stiff shoulders and chest muscles, try these yoga stretches to get rid of it!

Several Bollywood actors believe in the healing power of yoga. Shilpa Shetty, Malaika Arora, Rakul Preet, and Alia Bhatt are a few fitness enthusiasts who are fond of yoga and make sure they practice it daily. Varun Dhawan, who recently became a father to a baby girl, also swears by yoga. He took to his Instagram handle to share how yoga has helped relieve stiffness in his shoulders and chest muscles. In a video, he can be seen performing a few yoga for stiff shoulders under the supervision of his instructor.

“Yes, that’s been the most beneficial healing element in my life. I have had very stiff shoulders and chest muscles for a long time and these asanas have helped open me up and helped my digestion and sleep. It has taken me a long time to reach here under the super version of my teacher,” Varun posted on Instagram, along with a video in which he is seen with a trainer.

Check out Varun Dhawan’s Instagram post here:

Benefits of yoga for stiff muscles

Here are 5 common benefits of performing certain yoga stretches or poses that can help relieve and loosen up tight shoulder and chest muscles:

1. Increases flexibility

Yoga stretches like cow face pose (Gomukhasana), eagle pose (Garudasana) and the one Varun Dhawan is performing in the video target the shoulders and chest, which in turn helps to lengthen and stretch tight muscles. This can increase flexibility and reduce stiffness, enhancing range of motion.

2. Improves posture

Improper body posture is one of the most common causes of stiff muscles. However, many yoga poses focus on proper alignment and opening of the chest and shoulders, which can reduce the risk of developed a hunched back.

3. Relieves pain

Tightness in shoulder and chest muscles often leads to discomfort and even pain. Yoga stretches alleviate this tension by releasing muscle tightness and improving blood circulation to the affected areas.

yoga poses for neck
Yoga can ease neck and shoulder pain. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

4. Reduces stress

If you are stressed, your neck and shoulders may hold tension, causing pain and discomfort. Incorporating yoga into your daily routine will not only help target tight shoulders and chest muscles, but it can also improve your mental health. This, in turn, may release physical tension associated with stress.

5. Improves breathing

Opening the chest muscles through yoga stretches can expand the lungs and improve breathing capacity. This not only enhances respiratory function but also increases oxygen flow throughout the body, promoting overall well-being.

Yoga poses for stiff shoulders and chest

Practice these 5 yoga poses regularly to loosen up tight muscles in the shoulder and chest:

1. Cow face pose (Gomukhasana)

Gomukhasana stretches the shoulders, triceps, and chest muscles deeply. To perform this pose, sit on the floor, bend your legs, and cross your right leg over your left leg. Keep your back straight, bring one arm overhead, the other behind your back, and hold hands. Breathe normally and stay in the asana for 20–30 seconds. This pose can release tension in the upper body and improve posture.

A woman doing cow face pose
Gomukhasana asana is a perfect pose to stretch shoulders. Image courtesy: Freepik

2. Bridge pose (Setu bandhasana)

Setu bandhasana strengthens the back, and glutes, and opens the chest and shoulders. Lie on your back, bend your knees, and lift your hips while pressing your chin towards your chest. This pose not only stretches the chest but also strengthens the legs and improves flexibility in your spine.

3. Cobra pose (Bhujangasana)

Bhujangasana is a gentle backbend that targets the chest and shoulders. To perform it, lie on your stomach, place your hands under your shoulders, and lift your chest. Make sure your head is slightly pushed upward. This pose relieves tension in the upper back and enhances shoulder flexibility.

cobra pose
This yoga pose can help strengthen your core! Image courtesy: Shutterstock

4. Bow pose (Dhanurasana)

Dhanurasana stretches the entire front of the body, including the chest, shoulders, and abdomen. Lie on your stomach, bend your knees, and lift your chest simultaneously to reach back to hold your toes. This pose opens up tight muscles in your shoulder, chest, and leg, improving posture.

5. Thread the needle pose (Parsva balasana)

Parsva balasana opens the shoulders and upper back. Start in a tabletop position, placing one arm under your body, and rest your shoulder and ear on the mat. This gentle stretch releases tension in the shoulders, improves flexibility and helps calm the mind.

So, try these poses at home regularly to see the quick result!

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