Give your hips some attention!
You may have been feeling more aches and pains in your legs and back than normal over the past year in lockdown, we have all found ourselves sitting more than usual which can lead to muscle tightness in funny places you haven’t experienced before.
Mobilising your hips will keep the joints happy and healthy which will help maintain your range of motion- which can keep you more comfortable in everyday life and help reduce the risk of back pain. Especially good if you find yourself stuck at a desk a lot!.
Here are 5 really useful hip mobility exercises you can use as part of your warm-up or just to perform in the mornings to help keep those hips healthy and mobile.
Lunging from the knee
World’s greatest stretch
Hip inward rotation
Hip inward and outward rotation
Descriptions and a video demo below!
Lunging from the knee
Here we are performing a nice deep lunge, so start kneeling on one knee with the other foot flat on the floor and nice and far forward. From here transfer the weight forward sinking those hips towards the floor (if you can try and take your arms up to challenge your balance). Move nice and slowly to push that range of motion in the hips- don’t hold the stretched position, it’s not that kind of stretch. Repeat this several times on each leg.
The World’s Greatest Stretch
This is the best stretch before you start working out, helping to mobilise the hips, ankles and thoracic spine. Step forward with your right leg into a deep lunge, aiming to keep the back leg straight, place your left hand on the floor in line with the inside of your right foot. Then open up your chest and twist your upper torso reaching your right hand to the sky. Place your right hand on the floor by the left hand, move the right foot back alongside the left, and step the left foot forward to repeat on the other side.
Hip internal rotation
Sit on the floor leaning back on your hands with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor but have your legs apart. From here gently drop one of your knees inward aiming for it to touch the floor (keeping both sit bones on the floor), let it rest here for a few seconds, then replace. The repeat on the other leg.
Hip external and internal rotation
Sit on the floor leaning back on your hands with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor but have your legs apart. From here gently drop one of your knees outward aiming for it to touch the floor while also dropping the other knee inwards to touch the floor (trying to keep both sit bones on the floor) let it rest here for a few seconds, then switch sides.
Start standing with the feet wide. From here, lunge down as far as you can onto one leg, sinking the hips towards the floor keeping the other leg straight out to the side. If you can, try to then move your body across to lunge on the other side staying as low as possible- if you are not quite there yet then return to the standing position and repeat on the other side.
Repeat each exercise roughly 6 times on each side, more if you feel you need it. Try and fit these in as part of your workout, especially if you are doing a lower body session to really take care of your hips and optimise your session!