Stretch and warm up before any form of exercise.

If your muscles are quite tight you will feel the stretch straight away but try not to 'bounce'. Hold each stretch for at least five seconds and repeat five times gradually building up to holding for 30 seconds.

Achieve each position slowly and gently, avoiding quick and jerky movements that only increase muscle tightness and the chance of injury. In each position you should feel a light but comfortable stretching sensation. If you feel sharp pain, you have gone beyond your limit and need to ease off. With stretches 7 and 8, be careful not to arch your back, creating unnecessary strain. 

1 Tummy stretch

Lie face down of the floor, hands below your shoulders, and push up with your arms. Keep your hips on the floor. Hold and return. Although this is a tummy stretch, the main area felt will be the lower back.

2 Side stretch
Place feet wider than shoulder-width, bend the knees and extend one arm over your head while stretching the other arm towards your ankle. Slowly bend from the waist, reaching further down, feeling a good stretch in the side, rear shoulder and back. Hold and return. Repeat on the other side.
3 Low back stretch
Lie on your back. Use your hands to pull your knees into the chest until a good stretch is felt in the lower back. Hold and return.
4 upper body stretch
Interlock your fingers above your head, palms upward, stretching upwards. You will feel the back, rear shoulder, chest, the front of your upper arm and forearm muscles all being stretched. Hold and return.
5 Chest and shoulder stretch
Clasp hands behind your back and lift your arms until you feel a good stretch in the chest, front shoulder and front of your upper arms. Hold and return
6 Hamstring stretch
Lie on your back. Bring your knee to the chest, then straighten the leg. Push the heel up and toes down towards you, until you feel the stretch in the back of the upper leg. Hold and return. Repeat on the other side.
7 Calf stretch
Keep the rear leg straight with the heel pushed into the ground. Let the front leg bend and the knee come forward beyond the foot, until a good stretch is felt in the calf muscles of the rear leg. Hold and return and repeat on the other side.
8 Front of upper leg stretch
Take hold of the leg at the ankle and pull towards the buttocks until reaching a good stretching sensation. If you cannot feel the stretch in your reaching a good stretching sensation. If you cannot feel the stretch in your thigh, continue to pull the heel higher. Hold and return. Repeat with the other leg.