Looking to shift your perspective or get “un-stuck” heading into the new year? As Albert Einstein once said, “If you always do what you always did, you will always get what you always got,” and that can be true for both our thought patterns and our movement patterns.

When we sit in one position for a while, whether at your computer or elsewhere, we may start to feel tight or achy. A gentle twist can be a nice change in your position and perspective. Twisting is a functional movement that we use often throughout the day; think about reaching into the backseat of a car, moving something from one side of us to the other, or perhaps swinging tennis racket. Gentle twisting can help get the body and energy moving, support mobility in the spine, energize the body while calming the mind, easing tension in the back, and aiding in digestion.

Gentle twists can be done while standing, sitting in a chair, or even lying down. Focus on your breath and try to twist from the base of the spine, using your core muscles to support the movement.

In this four-and-a-half-minute standing twist practice, Mary Horne, Yoga Teacher from Central Arkansas VA, guides a gentle moving meditation. This practice is guided as a standing posture but can easily done in a chair.

Ready to make some changes related to your health and well-being? VA’s new Live Whole Health mobile application is a free, easy to use tool created for Veterans and others who are ready to take the next step in their Whole Health journey.

Whole Health is VA’s holistic approach to care that supports your health and well-being. Whole Health centers care around what matters to you, not what is the matter with you. With this app, you can fill out your personal health inventory, set goals, get virtual coaching, and learn more about Whole Health.

Live Whole Health is available for download on iOS or Android devices. The Live Whole Health app is not meant to replace professional care for clinical or mental health conditions.

Learn more in the Live Whole Health Mobile App Fact Sheet.


Alison M. Whitehead, MPH is the acting director for the Integrative Health Coordinating Center in the VHA Office of Patient Centered Care and Cultural Transformation.

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