Re: opening the joints
My son just reminded me of one of his favorites.
Stand with feet and legs apart like a spread eagle standing. Hands a little down from hozizontal.
Have someone grab one of your hands and then push into you. Stand and start opening from the toes on up. Concentrate on sending out in all direction from the spine, paying attention to the opposite direction he is pushing (like you are agreeing with him)
Take your opposite hand (and enter him) by moving it in his direction just a little. The effect on his initial grab will be like he is grabbing steel and many times they bounce themselves off by their applied strength. Involving the other side- adds to that.
Next, sink while opening. Ask them what they feel.
Its a good beggining exercise. The frame supports itself without much flexation allowing you to identify the joints.