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Keep calm & carry on.

Try our guided muscle relaxation with classical music

People stretching for a yoga session on the top of the Montparnasse Tower on July 4, 2017, in Paris. GEOFFROY VAN DER HASSELT/AFP/Getty Images
10min 29sec : Guided Progressive Muscle Relaxation with classical music

Guided progressive muscle relaxation is an exercise that helps improve awareness in your body by consciously tightening and relaxing muscles from head to toe. Using the video below or by listening to the audio player above, you will be guided through the process while working on calm breathing and focusing your thoughts on your muscles and how they feel. We've carefully selected pieces of classical music to accompany this exercise.

Many individuals with chronic back and neck pain experience tight muscles and aren't even aware if a muscle is tight or relaxed. If a muscle is constantly in a state of tightness or contraction, it can be very uncomfortable, can hinder mobility, interfere with sleep, and limit your activity. As you can imagine, over time any one of those can develop into more serious problems if not corrected.

By becoming more aware of your body and being able to realize what a tight muscle feels like, you will be able to self-correct to prevent any of these issues from happening while also relaxing your mind, your body, and reducing stress and anxiety. It might challenging when just starting to be able to isolate the tension in certain muscle groups, but do not be discouraged. With practice, it will become easier, and you will become more in tune with your body and be able to contract and relax certain muscle groups with ease.

This exercise is a co-presentation of Classical Minnesota Public Radio and HealthPartners.


Piano Concerto No. 5 "Emperor" Mvt 2
Composed by Ludwig van Beethoven
Performed by Ethella Chuprik and the CSSR State Philharmonic
Conducted by Reinhard Seifried

Violin Concerto in E minor, II. Andante
Composed by Felix Mendelssohn
Performed by Mariko Honda and the Slovak Philharmonic Orchestra
Conducted by Keith Clark

A Midsummer Night's Dream " Notturno"
Composed by Felix Mendelssohn
Performed by Camerata Cassovia
Conducted by Johannes Wildner

Piano Sonata No. 8 "Pathetique", II. Adagio cantabile
Composed by Ludwig van Beethoven
Performed by Silvia Cápová

Dance of the Blessed Spirits from Orfeo ed Euridice
Composed by Christoph Willibad Gluck
Performed by flutist János Bálint and harpist Nóra Mercz

All music provided under license from Naxos Records.

Nate Bahr, M.Ed Applied Kinesiology, works as a coordinator at Physicians Neck and Back Center and CORE Spinal Fitness in Edina, Minn., which is a part of HealthPartners.

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