Starting Position: Lie on your back on a mat, placing the backs of your lower legs and heels on the top of a bench so that the knees are at a ninety-degree bend. Gently contract your abdominal/core muscles to flatten your low back into the floor. Try to maintain this gentle muscle engagement throughout the exercise. Rest your arms on the floor along your sides with palms up and breathe deeply for 30 seconds to allow your hips to relax into this position.
Cross your left leg over the right; resting your left foot on your right knee. Try to maintain the ninety-degree bend in the left knee while in this position.
With both hands, reach down and grab the back of the right thigh. Pull your right thigh and knee toward your chest. The right foot should remain on top of the right leg back along the top of the bench. Repeat the stretch 2-5 times; Change legs placing the right foot on the left knee and repeat.
Exercise Variation: Use a bench (or stability ball), which will allow your hip and knee to remain at ninety-degree angles. Instead of a bench, use a stability ball, which will allow you to roll your right knee towards your chest and use the leverage of the ball to increase the intensity of the stretch.