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27 This exercise is a test of balance and also helps stretch your abdominal and leg muscles

If you've mastered Exercise No. 22 (SI, Dec. 9) you should have no trouble with this week's leg stretch. But don't try this one without the necessary conditioning of the earlier exercise. Balance is the crucial factor here, but it will improve as you practice the exercise. At first you may tip over backward, so be sure the area behind you is clear. If you do start to fall, keep your chin tucked down for safety.

Sitting on the floor, raise your legs and feet, grasp ankles and balance on your seat without letting any other part of you touch the floor. Hold for count of five.

Still holding onto your ankles and keeping your legs and feet off the floor, spread your legs apart to form a V. Hold for a slow count of 5, then 10, and finally 30.