Progressive Muscle Relaxation – Forget about tension and long-term stress

Progressive Muscle Relaxation

Do you often suffer from neck, back or headaches? Are you chronically stressed or just tense? Progressive muscle relaxation helps. 

Progressive Muscle Relaxation – What is it?

Progressive muscle relaxation is an active relaxation technique in which you contract and relax your muscles every time. Due to this alternation, the tensions in your muscles dissolve. Even stress symptoms can alleviate by progressive muscle relaxation. Sometimes progressive muscle relaxation is also referred to as deep muscle relaxation. This means the same.

It often helps if you allow yourself a break to get rid of your tension and stress symptoms. A cup of tea works great if you want to relax for a while. Start your day with it or unwind with a cup of tea after a long day at work.

Use and action of progressive muscle relaxation

The goal is that by regularly to practice fast and conscious physical and mental reached idle state .

Body and mind are interconnected. For example, if you have a lot of stress from your work or your private life, then you are not only mentally tense, but your muscles also contract. This creates tensions.

Conversely, muscle tension also affects your mind. If you manage to consciously relax your muscles, your body also releases mental stress more easily. You also use this principle for progressive muscle relaxation.

As soon as you tighten your muscles for a few seconds and then release them, the tensions start to ease. The more you do this, the better you will feel to consciously relax your muscles.

Example: You may have gone to the sauna after a stressful day. Most likely, in this heat you have not only relaxed your muscles, but also your mind.

But the progressive muscle relaxation does not only help with physical complaints. After a workout, it also helps well as cooling down and soon to rest to come.

Progressive muscle relaxation instructions and exercises

Wondering how progressive muscle relaxation works? We are happy to explain it to you. Usually you perform the progressive muscle relaxation lying down . But you can also sit or stand if that is more comfortable for you.

Now slowly start to tighten and relax the different muscle groups in your body . You tighten each muscle group for 5 seconds. Release slowly and then stay in the relaxed state for 10 seconds. Repeat this course three times per muscle group.

1. Feet

Pull your toes towards the soles of your feet , spread them out, or pull them towards your shin . Most importantly, you notice that you are tightening your muscles in your foot.

2. Calves

Then it is your calves’ turn. The easiest way to tighten them is to extend your feet . Pretend you want to be on the tips of your feet.

3. Thighs

Extend your leg as far as possible or bring your heel towards your buttocks. This way you consciously tighten your thigh at the front and back.

Repeat this exercise 1 to 3 times with the other leg.

4. Hands and forearms

Now proceed with your hands. Clench your fists and then move them towards your forearm .

5. Upper arms

Your upper arms are easiest to tighten when you bend or extend your arm .

When you are done with the first arm, repeat it again on the other side.

6. Buttocks

Now tighten your buttocks. Squeeze your butt tightly . Make sure your leg muscles remain relaxed.

7. Abdomen

Now the front of your body is next. Tighten your abs as firmly as possible.

8. Chest

Now tighten your chest muscles . If this is difficult for you, raise your arms and push your forearms together .

9. Neck and shoulders

To consciously relax your neck and shoulders, simply move your shoulders up as far as possible . This conscious relaxation and relaxation in this area is very good for getting rid of tensions.

Until now, we have focused on the major muscle groups. These will contribute to physical relaxation. The progressive muscle relaxation of the following muscles is very important for your psychological relaxation.

You now focus on the fine and detailed  facial muscles .

10. Mouth

Your mouth is made up of many different muscles. This way you can also tighten it in different ways. Open your mouth as far as possible or press your lips together without biting your teeth.

11. eyes

Especially around the area of ​​our eyes, a lot of tensions automatically accumulate without you consciously noticing. Now squint your eyes .

12. Forehead

Last but not least, tighten your forehead now. Raise your eyebrows as far as possible.

In addition to progressive muscle relaxation, we have listed 15 other relaxation techniques for you.


  • Progressive muscle relaxation is an effective method to relax.
  • It is easy to learn and can be performed without assistance.
  • Both physical and mental tensions can be reduced with this.
  • Also works perfectly as a cool-down after your workout.

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