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4 Simple Stretches to Help Relieve Stress and Tension

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No matter where you look right now, there's a running theme of collective fear, frustration, anxiety and stress permeating the country. And while it may feel selfish, helpless or not important enough, now is the time to take care of yourself. What that looks like varies from person to person, but even small things, like simple stretching exercises, can make a big difference.

Yoga is known as a zen exercise for a reason. There are actually quite a few reasons why yoga is helpful for relaxation and stress. Two of the main factors? Stretching your body helps relieve physical tension, which many people also say helps them feel less mentally or emotional tense. Secondly, an important part of yoga is connecting to your breathing and learning how to breathe deeper and in sync with movement. It's these two key components that help you find that zen, calmer state -- but you don't really have to do yoga to get there.