Ask any yoga teacher what their most requested pose is and chances are they will all answer the same: hip openers. Tight hips seem to be seem about as common as allergies in the spring. It’s no wonder. You can get tight hips from too much running, biking, and walking or you can get tight hips from sitting in a chair all day. Safe to say that covers the majority of people.
When you say you have tight hips you could be talking about any number of things that surround your hip. It might be your piriformis or perhaps glute medius. But most likely you are talking about your iliopsoas or what we like to term your “hip flexors,” and they are responsible for a lot!
- Flexing your hip joint
- Flexing your trunk forward
- Pulling your knees upward
- Moving your legs from side-to-side and front-to-back
- Helping to stabilize your lower body
Busy little bees, those hip flexors! But whether it’s the front, side, or back of your hips giving you trouble, here are six easy yoga moves to help alleviate those tight spots and get you moving (or sitting) again, pain free! Be sure to do this routine 2-3 times a week to see results.
1) Begin in a plank position. Tighten your abdominals and pull your right knee toward your right hand placing your right foot as close to your left hand as you can.
2) Keep your back leg long and keep your hips even as you relax your weight through the middle of your hips.
3) Breathe and hold for 30 seconds to 1 minute. Step back into plank and switch sides.
1) From a standing position, step the ball of your left foot to the back of the mat. Keep your feet slightly wider than one another like standing on railroad tracks.
2) Reach both arms straight overhead and bend the right knee to 90 degrees.
3) Relax your shoulders as you continue reaching up and lengthen the back leg. Hold 30 seconds to 1 minute and switch sides.
This pose stretches the chest, neck, spine, and hips, and strengthens the glutes and low back.
1) Begin lying on your back with knees bent and feet flat on the floor close to glutes.
2) Place arms flat on the floor next to you, tucking your shoulders under your back. Align knees with hip bones.
3) Press palms down as you lift your hips high and squeeze glutes and abdominals. Keep neck relaxed on the mat.
4) Continue to breathe and hold for 30 seconds to one minute.
1) Begin on feet, crouched down with tailbone between ankles and hands in prayer at chest.
2) Continue to press hands firmly together while at the same time pressing elbows against inner thighs.
3) Hold and breathe for 30 seconds to 1 minute.
This pose opens and stretches the hips, groin, and back and promotes relaxation.
1) Begin lying on your back and grab your big toes with your index and middle fingers.
2) Gently draw toes down so knee pull toward shoulders. Keep elbows gently pressing knees open.
3) Relax and breathe. Hold 30 seconds to 1 minute.
1) Begin lying face down on your mat with head slightly lifted and hand sitting directly under shoulders.
2) Point your toes so the tops of you feet are on the mat.
3) As you exhale, press arms straight and lift upper body and front of hips off the mat.
4) Keep your legs and feet relaxed and on the ground.
5) Keep your abdominals contracted and breathe slowly.
Suffering from back pain? Try our 4 Minute Yoga Flow For A Bad Low Back!
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