It’s not news that sitting for prolonged periods of time can reek havoc on your body. Lack of movement can cause bad posture, nagging lower back pain, and neck strain – but did you know that sitting is also the primary cause of hip tightness? Sitting all day means rarely extending your hip flexors which in turn, makes them shorter. This shortening can create an unwanted domino effect on the alignment of your pelvis, lower back and lower body. Sitting all day also means you’re not engaging your glutes, making them harder to do their necessary firing in everyday movement or your workout which can create knee strain. In short, your hips don’t lie – actually they’re pretty much compulsive truth tellers. So let’s hit the play button and get down to the business of hips that need a fix!
Workouts like the Pilates method will aid in full body alignment by lengthening the spine, stabilize the pelvis & working to bring your pelvis into a neutral position. But even if you are a regular Pilates practitioner, if your hips are extremely tight, you may benefit from doing these 5 extra stretches on a daily basis!
1. Knee to Chest Stretch
Lie on your back and gently pull one knee into your chest while keeping the other leg straight. Hold for 30 seconds and repeat with the other leg.
2. Figure Four Stretch
Lie on your back and cross your right leg over your left quad. Hold the back of your right leg and gently pull towards you. Hold for 30 seconds and repeat with the other leg.
3. Reclining Angle Bound Pose
Lie on your back and bring the soles of your feet together. Let your knees open and relax towards the floor. Hold for 30 seconds and repeat with the other leg.
4. Lunging Hip Flexor Stretch
Kneel on your left knee and place your right foot on the floor in front of you. Gently lean forward, stretching the front of your left leg. Engage your glutes for a deeper stretch. Hold for 30 seconds and repeat with the other leg.
5. Pretzel Stretch
Lie on one side and rest your head on your hand. Bend your top leg up as far as it will go and place on the floor. Bend your bottom leg back and grab hold of your foot. Hold for 30 seconds and switch sides.
We’ll see you at the studio!