The Binge-Watch Stretch Routine

TV watching stretches workout

7 stretches to do while watching tv

After a long day, sitting down to watch your favorite TV show on a comfy couch sounds like the perfect reprieve. But, in the day of “Netflix and Chill” it can be easy to spend too much time sitting and not enough time taking care of our bodies.

Stretching our muscles can alleviate pain, prevent injury and ease stress, but finding the time to do it and building a habit of stretching can be hard. Heaven knows we need our down time to unwind, and trading that for stretching just isn’t going to happen. The solution? Combine the two! Two birds, one stone.

The number of hours per day, on average, that the average American over the age of 15 spends watching TV. That’s twice as much time as the average American spends exercising. Put your TV time to good use!

Source: US Department of Labor


No, you don’t have to give up binge watching to help your body. By using these poses, you can binge better, destress on the couch and give your body the stretch it needs.

All these stretches can be done seated on the couch or standing in front of the TV for a greater challenge.

Figure Four Pose

Sitting for long periods of time at a desk or in traffic can lead to stiffness through your hip joints and cause low back pain. A seated figure four pose targets your outer hip and glute muscles without straining your back. Stretching through the hips can relieve back pain and help improve posture.


  • Sit on the edge of your seat.
  • Cross your right ankle onto your left knee, so that your calf is parallel to the ground.
  • Lengthen your spine and neck until straight.
  • Lean forward, keeping your spine and neck straight.
  • Hold for at least 10 seconds and switch to the other side

Seated Eagle Pose (arms only option available)

This might look complicated, but for those who spend a lot of time slouched over a desk, a few seconds of this pose can create space between the shoulder blades and chest. Say goodbye to rounded shoulders and knotted shoulder muscles!


  • Sit on the edge of your seat.
  • Cross your right leg over your left leg.
  • (arms only start here)Lengthen your spine and neck until straight.
  • Hold your arms out in front of you, upper arms parallel to the ground, forearms pointed skyward, forming a right angle. Your hands should be at eye level.
  • Cross your right arm under and around your left, in a twisted shape.
  • Press the backs of your hands together or cross your wrists so your can press your right fingertips into the palm of your left hand.
  • Raise your elbows to shoulder height while keeping your shoulders away from your ears.
  • Hold for at least 10 seconds and switch to the other side.

Seated Cat-Cow

Give your spine some love from top to bottom with this simple pose. When you arch and concave your back, you give relief in the low back while opening your chest, abdomen, and shoulders.


  • Sit on the edge of your seat with both feet flat on the ground and your spine straight.
  • Hold onto the edge of your seat with both hands
  • While breathing out, arch your back by pulling your belly back while rounding your shoulders and hips forward.
  • When you breathe in, round your back by pulling your shoulders back while pushing your belly and ribs forward.
  • Repeat on your out and in breaths at least 4x

side stretchSide-Body Stretch

Side bends lengthen your oblique, hip and glute muscles while aiding in balance. These are essential to a full-body stretch.


  • Sit tall with both feet flat on the ground and your spine straight.
  • Reach both hands straight up towards the ceiling.
  • Grab your left wrist with your right hand
  • Lean to the right, creating a C shape from your hips up to your fingertips
  • Hold for at least 10 seconds and switch to the other side

Hamstring Stretch

A lack of movement throughout the day can result in tight hamstrings which can lead to low back pain, neck pain, or headaches. This hamstring stretch can benefit all the muscles in your legs, ankles and feet.


  • Sit on the edge of your seat with your spine straight.
  • Extend your right foot straight forward with your heel on the floor.
  • Pull your left foot back a couple inches
  • With a straight spine, lean out over your leg.
  • Hold for at least 10 seconds and switch to the other side.

Neck Stretch

Neck pain is common in people with high-stress lives. Relieving that pain can help with focus and energy. This stretch can target both the large and small muscles in the neck for a more complete stretch.


  • Sit tall with your spine straight and your shoulders down away from your ears.
  • Reach your right hand up and place it onto the left side of your head.
  • Lean your head to the right, do not pull with your hand but let the weight of your hand rest on your head.
  • Hold for 10 seconds
  • Rotate your head down so you are looking at your right armpit.
  • Hold for 10 seconds
  • Rotate your head up so your chin in pointed upward.
  • Hold for 10 seconds
  • Switch to the other side and repeat.

boat stretchSeated Boat Pose

Challenge your core during commercial breaks by holding this pose – no crunches needed. Strengthening your core helps improve balance, relieve back pain and tighten your belly. Increase the effects by holding a twist on each side for detoxing effects.


  • Sit on the edge of your seat.
  • Lean slightly back so your tailbone is touching the seat, but your shoulders should not be on the back of the seat.
  • Raise your feet off the ground until your knees are above your hips
  • Lift your calves off the ground until they are parallel to the ground
  • Either hold behind your knees to help with balance or extend your arms so they hovering next to your legs
  • Hold for 10-30 seconds
  • (Add a twist) Bring your hands together over your knees, interlacing the fingers
  • Twist your hands to the right without moving your legs or leaning forward.
  • Hold for 10 seconds
  • Switch to the other side
  • Hold for 10 seconds

Sources: American Time Use Survey

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