Have you had tightness around the hips? It is an uncomfortable experience and can arise due to tension around hip flexors. Hip flexors are muscles at the top of your thighs that connect the hip and the upper leg.
It’s these muscles that allow you to raise your leg and bend at the waist. People who spend most of their time seated or regular gym goers can suffer from hip tightness at any time. This increases your risk of injury because of increased demand for tissues that are already affected.
Therefore, there are hip flexibility stretches you can try to relax your hip flexor muscles. Do you want to learn about these exercises? Read on.
What Are Hip Flexibility Stretches?
Hip flexibility stretches are exercises meant to relax tight hip flexor muscles. Several muscles combine to form hip flexor muscle; tensor fasciae latae, Sartorius, iliopsoas and rectus femoris.
These muscles are found around the top of the thighs and they connect the hip and the upper leg. The role of the hip flexor muscles is to allow you to raise your leg and bend at the waist.
Most people are bound to get tight hip muscles regardless of whether they are regular gym-goers or professional athletes or those that spend most of their time seated.
Tight hip muscles can lead to injuries and poor movement. Therefore, it’s important that people learn hip flexibility stretches to help them in times like these.
Importance of Stretches
- Stretches help prevent injury caused by tight muscles.
- Stretches improve flexibility.
- Stretches improve sports performance.
- They also improve posture.
- Stretches reduce soreness in case of injury.
- They work the mind by relaxing it.
- Stretches also increase energy.
Foam Roller Stretch
This requires you to lie face down on a foam roller under and below your right hip. Put your left leg on the side with the knee bent at 90 degrees angle. Rest your forearms in front of you on the ground to take some of your weight off the hip.
This is to make the stretch pain-free. Stretch the right leg behind you with the toes pointing backward and the front of the foot flat against the ground.
Gently move forward and backward over the foam roller. If you need extra stretch, add side movements as you roll. Keep rolling for about 30 seconds and identify the trigger or painful points in the process.
When you do, focus on them for about 10 seconds to relieve the tightness or pain. Repeat the process with your left hip.
Kneeling Hip Flexor Stretch
Kneel on your right knee and put your left foot on the floor. Have your left knee at 90 degrees angle. Move your hip forward and maintain a straight back as you lean your torso forward.
Hold this position for 30 seconds. Repeat it about 2 to 5 times with each leg as you increase the stretch each time.
You can do this kneeling hip flexor stretch daily to help loosen tight hip flexor muscles and help you do your sports well.
This stretch is common in yoga practices. You can use it daily to improve mobility in the hip muscles hence improving sports performance. Put your hands and knees in a tabletop position.
Gently bring the right knee forward and put it behind your right wrist, and place the right ankle in front of the left hip.
Straighten the left leg behind you, ensuring your left knee is kept straight and the toes pointed. Maintain your hips square as you slowly lower yourself to the ground. Hold this position for about 10 seconds.
Push on your hands to release this position as you lift your hips and move the legs back to all fours-the starting position. Repeat this process on the left side.
Hip flexibility stretches are important to keep fit and relieve the hip flexor muscles of pain and discomfort. Whether you are physically active or not, you can get tight hip flexor muscles anytime.
Therefore, knowing the right stretches to take on can help relieve pain and flexibility.