Zoga Stretching Routine Overview

The Zoga daily stretching routine is said to relieve joint pain and stiffness and reduce muscle spasms.  It is also designed to increase energy, reduce stress and increase range of motion.  In addition, the stretching routine will lengthen muscles, decompress joints, improve posture and enhance athletic performance.  Here is a comprehensive overview of the Zoga Stretching Routine.

What is Zoga Stretching?

Zoga was developed by Dr. Suzanne Osborne of Pure Life Inc. Dr. Osborne is also the author of the book “Pure Life, The Pura Vida Journey”.  She is a retired Doctor of Chiropractic and is now an active holistic health and fitness educator.

When done daily, these low-impact stretches will increase your flexibility.  In addition, some people say that it just makes them feel better.  There are many stretching routines available today; however Zoga is different because instead of focusing on one body part it is more like a simple version of Yoga. You move your entire body to create a flowing circuit of stretching instead of isolated stretches.  Zoga is based on physical therapy and rehabilitation style stretches.

Anyone can perform the Zoga stretching routine to increase flexibility in a quick and easy fashion without much thought; however it is designed in a specific order to relax some joints and muscles before stretching others.  Zoga stretching routine can be completed it 8-10 minutes per day, divided into two parts.  Part one is standing and part two is done on the floor.  Some folks prefer to start with part 2 first thing in the morning, while still in bed.  This is especially helpful for the elderly or those suffering from lower back pain or arthritis.

Don’t worry about going to a gym for these stretches.  All you need is a little space to stretch and a thick mat.  The more padding the better it is.  To get started:

  • Take off your shoes.
  • Wear loose, comfortable clothing.
  • Minimize interruptions. Turn off your phone ringer if you can.  You can even put on some soothing music.
  • Try to get into a daily routine.  According to Dr. Osborne, repeating the same routine daily will help reinforce neural pathways and signals your body to relax even more deeply.
  • Breathe deeply
  • Stand in front of a full length mirror if possible to check your form.  Eventually you can close your eyes while you perform the stretching routine so that you can increase your focus.

Perform each stretch two times in a row.  Once you become used to the routine, feel free to add more repetitions.  For exercises with a left to right motion Dr. Osborne says to “always move toward the left side first. Go to the left side first, then go to the right side. For example, if you are stretching your back by bending to the side, then you would reach with your right hand and bend to the left side first.”

She also says not to count during the stretching routine.  Instead it should be more about relaxing and it should be a calming experience.  Hold the stretches as long as you comfortably can.  Learn the routine so one stretch flows into the next one.

The full Zoga stretching routine encompasses your warm up, then the standing stretches of lower back, neck, shoulder, “swimming” stretches, and “fencing & chopping wood” stretches.  Moving now to the mat, the stretches include low back warm up, raise and twist and then the runners’ stretches.  The stretching routine is wrapped up with a cool down.

Stay tuned to stretching routine website for Part 2 of the Zoga Stretching Routine Overview.  If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me.

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