Starting Position: Stand facing a wall, arms length away with your feet hip-width apart and toes facing forward. Place your hands on the wall slightly higher than your shoulders. Engage your abdominal muscles to stabilize your spine. Pull your shoulder blades down and back without arching your low back. Step back with your RIGHT leg into a split-stance position keeping both feet flat on the floor and toes pointing forward. Keep your head in line with your spine.
Begin slowly moving your body towards the wall. Allow the elbows and the LEFT (front) knee to bend. Do not bend at the hips. Keep your spine lengthening out of your pelvis. Do not arch the back. Continue to bend the LEFT (front) knee while keeping the back leg straight. Push the RIGHT (back) heel into the floor with toes pointed forward. Support your body weight with your arms as you shift your weight forward. Increase the stretch by leaning your body more deeply into to the wall and increasing the bend in your left knee. Continue to press your heel into the ground.
Hold the stretch position for 15-30 seconds. Repeat for a total of 2-4 repetitions. Try to move into the stretch more deeply with each repetition, but be sure to keep your body in alignment and heels in contact with the floor. Complete all repetitions on one leg before changing sides.
Exercise Variation: To increase the stretch in the soleus muscle, slightly bend the back knee while pressing the heel into the floor.