Chill Out With These 420-Inspired Relaxing Stretches

In honor of today's incredibly important holiday, the Hollywood location of Equinox partnered with cannabis company Lord Jones to create an active recovery routine that pairs perfectly with the company's signature CBD-infused lotion. This compound is found in marijuana, but doesn't get you high. Instead, it has been known to produce pain relief and feelings of relaxation, meaning it's perfect for a chilled-out yoga session.

"While I’ll always suggest movement over not moving, chronic movement without regeneration is also damaging," says Derek Beres, a trainer at Equinox Hollywood who helped devise the Higher Healing workshop. Translation: Taking rest days to hydrate and recuperate between your workouts is a good idea, and doing some form of gentle movement (e.g. yoga) as part of your recovery is an even better one. It might even make your sore, tense muscles feel a bit better.

Beres says he went with the poses ahead because they target the tension-filled "trouble areas" he sees most often in his students. The first one, Easy Seat, targets your shoulders, upper back, and neck. "Chronic sitting, driving, and poor habits like constant texting and reading devices has created havoc in these regions," Beres says. The other two, Seated Twist and Bound Angle Pose, target your lower back and feet, respectively.

Although the poses can, of course, be done without the help of CBD lotion, the idea is that the CBD can help make them more effective. "CBD acts as an analgesic and as an anti-inflammatory," Cindy Capobianco, co-owner of Lord Jones, tells R29. "So it not only controls pain but [also] reduces inflammation." (If you can't get your hands on the Lord Jones cream, we'd suggest checking out this one from Mary's Naturals and this one from Elixinol.)

Read on to learn how to do three poses from the active regeneration class (lotion not included, sadly).

Photo: Courtesy of PRISMATICS.
Easy Seat

Apply CBD lotion to the back of your neck, upper back, and across the tops of the shoulders, and wait 10 minutes for it to penetrate. Fold 1-2 thick blankets to sit on, so your tailbone is supported and legs are resting straight out in front of you on the floor.

Begin to slowly cross your shins, with your knees open wide, and tuck each foot under the opposite knee or shin so you’re sitting comfortably cross-legged. Slowly and gently roll your neck from side to side, and steadily turn your head to look left, right, up and down while seated in this upright posture. Keep your shoulders pressed down your back and drawn together, sitting up tall. Breathe deeply and let the tension melt out of your neck and shoulders for as long as you feel comfortable.
Photo: Courtesy of PRISMATICS.
Seated Twist

Apply CBD lotion to your lower back and hips, and wait 10 minutes for it to penetrate. Sit with your legs straight out in front of you.

Lift your right foot, bend your right knee, and place your foot back on the ground just outside of your left thigh. Keep your left leg stretched out long. Take a deep inhale, and lift and lengthen your torso. Exhale, and make sure your torso is soft and shoulders are pressed back as you twist to the right, and place your right hand firmly on the ground behind your sacrum.

Keep your left buttock and leg firmly planted. Wrap your left arm around your right knee (or hook your left elbow outside your right knee) and focus on pulling your left shoulder back even further.

You can go deeper by turning your head to the right, or modify the pose by looking over your left shoulder. Hold for 30 seconds to 1 minute focusing on lengthening as you inhale and twisting more deeply as you exhale. Release with a deep exhalation and do the same thing on the other side.
Photo: Courtesy of PRISMATICS.
Bound Angle Pose

Apply CBD lotion to your feet, concentrating on the soles and ankles, and wait 10 minutes for it to penetrate.

Start seated with your legs straight out in front of you. Roll your ankles out a few times to each side. Take a deep breath in and on the exhale bend your knees and pull your heels toward your pelvis. Hold the soles of your feet together so your feet are touching, and let your knees open out to either side. Press your feet together and bring your heels back as close as you can to your pelvis. Grasp the big toe of each foot with the first and second finger and thumb. Sit with the pelvis and tailbone in a balanced position with equal weight on the floor. Grow tall throughout your chest and make sure your shoulder blades are pressing tightly down your back, while your torso and core are strong.

Breathe deeply for as long as you feel comfortable.
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