Guest Author - Terri Johansen
One of the common complaints I hear is ďmy hips are so tight". Sitting too long can make the hips tight. Some forms of exercise use the hip muscles more than others such as walking and running creating tight hips. This doesnít mean give up these exercises it just means remember to stretch your hips. Tight hips will hinder your range of motion, and affect your body in negative ways such as: increase in arthritis pain; bursitis, and back pain. It can also affect the way we stand and create problems with posture. If we donít use our hips correctly then we tend to overload our lower backs.
Here are seven hip stretches that will help relieve your tight hips.
1.Frog Squat. Start in a standing position, feet hip width apart, and heels of your feet turned towards each other. Slowly lower your body into a deep squat touching the ground with both hands. Keep your heels in position. Stand and repeat. Try for 10 repetitions.
2.Dropped Knee Lunge. Start in a standing position, feet hip width apart. Bend your right knee and draw your left leg out long behind you. Drop your left knee to the floor. Hold for 10 seconds then switch sides.
3.Foot to Butt. This stretch can be done against a wall, lying down, or free standing. Whichever you choose the stretch is done the same way. Bend your right knee and draw your right foot up behind you towards your butt. Hold for 10 seconds and repeat on left leg. Some of you will only make it a little way and that is okay. Keep trying. You can also use a yoga strap. Put the strap around the ball of your foot and gently pull it towards your butt.
4.Hand to Big Toe. This pose can be done standing or lying down. This is the standing position. Lift your right leg as high as you can in front of you. Use a table or chair to prop it on. This may be enough of a stretch, however in the full stretch you will bend forward reaching with your right hand towards your right toe.
Reverse and do the left leg. Hold each side for at least 10 seconds.
5.Stand and Reach Stretch. Start in a standing position with feet hip width apart. Keep your right leg forward and stretch the left leg straight out behind you foot on the floor. Check your posture and make sure your hips are facing forward. If you can keep your right leg straight then do, but if not then bend the knee slightly. Put your hands on your waist and bend forward at the hips. Slowly drop further and reach your hands to the floor or somewhere on your right leg. Hold for 10 seconds. Repeat on opposite leg.
6.Seated Foot to Knee. In a seated position with your legs straight out, reach both hands behind you. You will be leaning into your hands for support and balance. Bend your left leg at the knee and draw your foot near your body. Bend your right leg at the knee, take your right foot and lay it on your left knee. The straighter you can sit the more intense the stretch. When it is too intense lean back on your arms. But make sure your legs are doing the work. Hold for 10 seconds then repeat on other side.
7.Butterfly Stretch. Sit with your legs straight out in front of you. Draw the soles of your feet together. Hold either feet, or your ankles. You want the upper body to remain up straight so if you have to reach further up the leg. Ultimately soles of feet together and chest and head lifted. Hold for 10 seconds then repeat.
Try these seven great stretches to relieve your tight hips. They will thank you for it.
Always check with a medical professional before trying any new exercises. Be healthy, be happy!
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