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Exercises

All images are property of the Courtyard Clinic © 2016. Any unauthorised use of these images will be subject to legal action.

Hips, Lower back, © Courtyard Clinic 2016 Hips, Lower back,  © Courtyard Clinic 2016

Hips, Lower back

Start in a hip width stance with arms braced at shoulder height
Keep you torso upright and raise your knee up to hip height (or as high as is comfortable)
Gently rotate the knee and hip across your body closing your hips, then back out away from your body opening your hips
Repeat 10 times then change legs

Ankle, Knees, Hips, © Courtyard Clinic 2016 Ankle, Knees, Hips,  © Courtyard Clinic 2016

Ankle, Knees, Hips

Start in a shoulder width stance
Arms braced across your chest or on temples (as shown), on hips or reaching out in front of you, whichever is most comfortable
Start to squat down by pushing the hips back, pushing the knees out and the heels down
Go down to a depth that is comfortable
Aim to get your hips below the line of your knee - use your depth as a reference of your improving strength
Stand and repeat 10-12 times.

Birddog - Core, lower back, glutes, © Courtyard Clinic 2016 Birddog - Core, lower back, glutes,  © Courtyard Clinic 2016

Birddog - Core, lower back, glutes

Start in an all fours position (use a mat or carpeted area to avoid discomfort)
Take a breath and brace your stomach, supporting your core
Using opposite arms and legs reach up and away from the floor in a controlled movement Pause briefly at the top of the motion
Return to the start and alternate the arms and legs

Facial crunch - Core, © Courtyard Clinic 2016 Facial crunch - Core,  © Courtyard Clinic 2016

Facial crunch - Core

Lay on your back with your feet a short distance from your hips.
Bring your head slightly off the floor (it may help to imagine holding an apple under your chin thought this exercise).
Reach your arms up towards the floor by your ears as far as is comfortable.
With your arms leading the motion reach towards your knees, arms parallel to thighs
Roll the shoulders off the floor and squeeze your stomach at the top of the motion.
Return gently to the start position
Repeat 8-10 times.


Crunch w.reach - Core, © Courtyard Clinic 2016 Crunch w.reach - Core,  © Courtyard Clinic 2016

Crunch w.reach - Core

Lay on your back with feet a short distance from hips.
Bring head slightly off the floor (it may help to imagine holding an apple under your chin throughout this exercise).
Start with arms flat on the floor
Begin the motion by reaching towards your knees with arms parallel to thighs
Roll the shoulders off the floor and squeeze your stomach at the top of the motion.
Return gently to the start position
Repeat 10-12 times.

Glute bridge - Core, glute, hamstring, © Courtyard Clinic 2016 Glute bridge - Core, glute, hamstring,  © Courtyard Clinic 2016

Glute bridge - Core, glute, hamstring

Begin lying on the floor with feet a small distance from hips.
Take an initial breath and brace your core
Squeeze your glutes and drive your hips into the air
Pause briefly and return to the floor
Repeat 10-12 times

Glute march, © Courtyard Clinic 2016 Glute march,  © Courtyard Clinic 2016

Glute march

Begin lying on the floor with feet a small distance from hips
Take an initial breath and brace your core
Squeeze your glutes and drive hips into the air
Bend one knee to 90 degrees and reach up towards the sky
Pause briefly and return to the floor
Alternate legs
Repeat 10-12 times







Heel touch - Core (obliques), © Courtyard Clinic 2016 Heel touch - Core (obliques),  © Courtyard Clinic 2016

Heel touch - Core (obliques)

Begin lying on the floor with feet a small distance from hips
Bring your head slightly off the floor (it may help to imagine holding an apple under your chin throughout this exercise)
Arms by your sides start the motion by reaching down towards first one heel and then the other, pausing in between
Repeat each side 10-12 times.







Sprinter’s start - Core, glutes, legs, © Courtyard Clinic 2016 Sprinter’s start - Core, glutes, legs,  © Courtyard Clinic 2016

Sprinter’s start - Core, glutes, legs

Start in a hip width standing position
Start the motion by stepping back with one leg and reaching with straight arms to your toes (similar to a sprinter on the starting blocks)
Stand upright and alternate
Repeat 10-12 times.


Tempo side plank - Core (oblique), © Courtyard Clinic 2016 Tempo side plank - Core (oblique),  © Courtyard Clinic 2016

Tempo side plank - Core (oblique)

Start by lying on your side with your knees slightly bent
Place your elbow under your shoulder
Slowly push hips up into the air using your elbow and hand to stabilize
Return to the floor and repeat.
To increase the difficulty of this exercise use a straight legged start position

Adductors - 1, © Courtyard Clinic 2016 Adductors - 1,  © Courtyard Clinic 2016

Adductors - 1
Start on all fours
Reach out with one leg straight out to the side of your hip
Keep the arch of your foot pushed into the ground
Gently rock back towards your heels and then forwards as far as is comfortable (you should feel a slight stretch along the inside of your knee)
Repeat 8-10 times then switch feet.

Adductors - 2, © Courtyard Clinic 2016 Adductors - 2,  © Courtyard Clinic 2016

Adductors - 2
Start on all fours
Reach out with one leg straight out to the side of your hip
Keep the arch of your foot pushing into the ground
Rotate your toe upwards as far as comfortable then return to the ground
Repeat 8-10 times then switch feet










Spit reach rotation, Shoulders lower back, © Courtyard Clinic 2016 Spit reach rotation, Shoulders lower back,  © Courtyard Clinic 2016

Spit Reach Rotation, Shoulders Lower Back
Start in a split stance, lead arm folded across your chest and opposite arm reaching straight up above your shoulder
Initiate the movement by reaching up towards the sky and simultaneously reaching across your body with your folded arm to rotate your body
Repeat 10 times per side.

Hamstrings, Back, Shoulders, © Courtyard Clinic 2016 Hamstrings, Back, Shoulders,  © Courtyard Clinic 2016

Hamstrings, Back, Shoulders
Start in a hip width stance
This exercise can be performed with a broom or appropriately sized stick
Start the movement by reaching your arms away from your hips whilst pushing your hips back
You should feel a slight stretch across the back of your legs. If not, try to avoid allowing your hips to drop low and be sure to keep your back flat
Return to the starting position and repeat 10 times.

Ankle, Knees, Hips, Lower Back, © Courtyard Clinic 2016 Ankle, Knees, Hips, Lower Back,  © Courtyard Clinic 2016

Ankle, Knees, Hips, Lower Back
Start in a hip width stance
This exercise can be performed with a broom or appropriately sized stick
Start the movement by stepping straight out to the side and reaching with the same side hand to approximately knee height
Return to the start in a controlled movement
Repeat on alternate sides for 10 repetitions.

Lower back, Hamstrings, © Courtyard Clinic 2016 Lower back, Hamstrings,  © Courtyard Clinic 2016

Lower back, Hamstrings
Start in a hip width stance
This exercise can be performed with a broom or appropriately sized stick
Start with the stick at chest height
Reach down towards your toes, keep your back flat and reach in a controlled circle back to your chest height
Repeat 10 times.

Back, Shoulders, © Courtyard Clinic 2016 Back, Shoulders,  © Courtyard Clinic 2016

Back, Shoulders
Start in a split stance with arms braced at shoulder height
Keep you torso upright to begin with
Then reach with the hand opposite your front leg under and straight away from your other arm
Think of reaching through this gap and move as far as is comfortable before returning to the start position
Repeat 10 times then change stance and hands

Ankle, Knee, Hips, © Courtyard Clinic 2016 Ankle, Knee, Hips,  © Courtyard Clinic 2016

Ankle, Knee, Hips
Start in a hip width stance
Step forward to a comfortable distance, flexing slightly through the knee and ankle
Step as far out as allows for a controlled return
Alternate your legs on each step
Repeat 10-12 times.

Ankles, Knees, Hips, Back & Shoulders, © Courtyard Clinic 2016 Ankles, Knees, Hips, Back & Shoulders,  © Courtyard Clinic 2016

Ankles, Knees, Hips, Back & Shoulders
Start in a shoulder width stance, hands palm up at hip height
Squat down by driving your hips back and knees apart, whilst reaching out with both hands in front of you
Try to allow your shoulder blades to slide forward (it helps to imagine stopping a bouncing ball coming towards you), then reverse this movement into the top position

Hips, © Courtyard Clinic 2016 Hips,  © Courtyard Clinic 2016

Hips
Start in a shoulder width stance
Try to keep your knees locked and braced, and drive your hips in a straight line to your left as far as comfortable, then to the right as far as comfortable
Repeat 10-20 times.

Ankle, Knee, © Courtyard Clinic 2016 Ankle, Knee,  © Courtyard Clinic 2016

Ankle, Knee
Stand with feet hip width apart
Use a wall or sofa arm etc to steady yourself
With a straight leg, reach out and touch your toe in front of you at the furthest comfortable point
Return to the starting position
Keep your back foot relaxed at the ankle and knee
Repeat 10 times each side then change leg

Ankle, Knee, © Courtyard Clinic 2016 Ankle, Knee,  © Courtyard Clinic 2016

Ankle, Knee
Start arms’ distance away from the wall, feet hip width apart
Reach out and across your body with your foot, toes towards the wall
Keep your knee and ankle slightly flexed
Repeat by reaching out away from your body
Repeat up to 10 times then change legs

Ankle, Knee, © Courtyard Clinic 2016 Ankle, Knee,  © Courtyard Clinic 2016

Ankle, Knee
Start in a split stance with your lead -foot toes touching the wall
Brace arms at shoulder height
Relax your back knee and reach with the front knee towards the wall aiming for the inside of the knee
Return, then reach straight forward, above the toe, return, and then to the outside of the knee
Use the wall as your reference of the furthest point you want to move to
Be careful not to bang your knee
Do 3 full runs through then change legs.

Knee, Hip, Lower Back, © Courtyard Clinic 2016 Knee, Hip, Lower Back,  © Courtyard Clinic 2016

Knee, Hip, Lower Back
Start in a split stance with arms braced at shoulder height
Keep you torso upright and gently push your hips as far as comfortable to the right and then to the left
Try to be as smooth with the motion as possible and avoid rotating at the hips
Complete 10 reps or hold for 20 seconds, then change legs

Exercise & Stretches - Back

Lumbar Rotation, © Courtyard Clinic 2016 Lumbar Rotation, © Courtyard Clinic 2016

Lumbar Rotation

1. Lie on your back with your arms outstretched and knees together and bent to 90°.
2. Drop knee’s slowly to the left until you feel a stretch in your lower back.
3. Hold for at least 10 seconds before slowly bringing the knee’s back and dropping to the right for 10 seconds.
4. Repeat 3-4 times each side.

Bilateral Knee Hugs, © Courtyard Clinic 2016

Bilateral Knee Hugs

1. Hug knee’s slowly up towards your chest, using both hands, until you feel a gentle stretch in your lower back.
2. Hold the stretch for at least 10 seconds.
3. Ease off slowly until your feet touch the ground.
4. Repeat 3-4 times.

Unilateral Knee Hugs, © Courtyard Clinic 2016 Unilateral Knee Hugs, © Courtyard Clinic 2016

Unilateral Knee Hugs

1. Hug your left knee slowly up towards your chest, using both hands, until you feel a gentle stretch in your lower back and buttocks.
2. Hold the stretch for at least 10 seconds.
3. Ease off slowly and repeat with the right leg.
4. Repeat 3-4 times.

Superman Stretches, © Courtyard Clinic 2016 Superman Stretches, © Courtyard Clinic 2016

Superman Stretches

1. On all fours reach your right arm out straight in front of you, hold four 10 seconds.
2. Return to all fours position, then extend the right leg straight out behind you and hold for 10 seconds.
3. Repeat exercise on the left side.
4. Repeat each side 3-4 times.

Cat Stretches, © Courtyard Clinic 2016 Cat Stretches, © Courtyard Clinic 2016

Cat Stretch

1. On all fours flex your back by pushing your middle-upper back up towards the ceiling until you feel a gentle stretch. Hold for 10 seconds.
2. Relax and allow back to slump in to a neutral position.
3. Repeat 3-4 times.

Exercise & Stretches - Neck

Neck Flexion Stretch, © Courtyard Clinic 2016

Neck Flexion Stretch

1. This stretch can be done kneeling (as shown) or seated.
2. Keeping your back straight nod your chin down towards your chest gently until you feel a gentle stretch at the back of your neck and upper back. Try to relax.
3. Hold for at least 10 seconds before slowly bringing the head back to neutral.
4. Repeat 3-4 times each side.

Neck Side-bending Stretch, © Courtyard Clinic 2016 Neck Side-bending Stretch, © Courtyard Clinic 2016

Neck Side-bending Stretch

1. This stretch can be done kneeling (as shown) or seated.
2. Keeping your back straight, slowly drop your left ear down towards your left shoulder until you feel a gentle stretch in the right side of your neck and right shoulder. Try to relax.
3. Hold for at least 10 seconds before slowly bringing the head back to neutral.
4. Repeat 3-4 times each side.

Neck Rotation Stretch, © Courtyard Clinic 2016 Neck Rotation Stretch, © Courtyard Clinic 2016

Neck Rotation Stretch

1. This stretch can be done kneeling (as shown) or seated.
2. Keeping your back straight, slowly turn your head towards the left until you feel a gentle stretch. Try to relax.
3. Hold for 5 seconds before slowly bringing the head back to neutral.
4. Repeat 3-4 times each side.

All images are property of the Courtyard Clinic © 2016. Any unauthorised use of these images will be subject to legal action.