Hip stretches included on this page can be used to stretch hip flexors, hip extensors, adductors and abductors.
A simple stretch for the hip extensors is low lunge. In this case the hip extensors of the front leg are stretched. This pose could also be also be used as a gentle stretch for the hip flexors of the rear leg.
You could also use low lunge to strengthen your shoulders and arms, for example by bending your arms push-up style to sink your chest.
A fun variation of low lunge is with the front foot turned out as in this glute stretch. It stretches the side of the hip quite strongly. Other glute stretches can be done while sitting or lying on the back.
In most cases, glute stretches work on the back of the hip with the leg externally rotated. This can also target the piriformis.
The adductors are the muscles along the inner thigh. They generally work to pull the leg inwards and so to stretch them you can move the leg outwards.
Note that even though these muscles extend down the length of the inner thigh, they mainly work on the hip hip joint. Exceptions to this are muscles like the gracilis and sartorius, which though colocated with the adductors, cross the knee joint and so aren't, strictly speaking, hip muscles.
(If you do want to stretch these muscles at the same time as you stretch the inner thigh hip muscles, then make your knee strong as well as straight.
The abductors (which move the legs outwards and generally include gluteus medius and gluteus minimus) are situated between the top of the pelvis and the top of the thigh bone at the side of the pelvis.
Fibers of the gluteus maximus that attach to the Iliotibial tract as well as the tensor fascia latae muscle which also attach to this band of connective tissue are both positioned close to the gluteus minimus and medius.
To stretch these muscles along with the pure hip adductors, again it can help to make the knee(s) both straight and actively stable.
Another way to stretch the lateral glutes is to stand with the legs crossed, both knees straight and then bend over. Push the hips to one side of the other to increase the stretch.
You can also do this outer hip stretch with one leg (the front one) bent.
For extra fun and excitement, and to exercise the adductors of the straight leg, try lifting the straight leg foot (not shown).
You can do this with hands on the floor (which can be helpful when getting into the pose) or with hands lifted.
There are various methods for stretching the hips actively. The techniques in the Active Stretching and Muscle Control For Better Flexibility ebooks involve techniques for activating hip flexors or extensors to move the thighs relative to the pelvis.
In the Simple Hip Control Exercises video the focus is on using the hip flexors and extensors to move the pelvis relative to the thighs.
Learn how to use Friction to improve leg and arm strength.
Simple exercises with easy to follow instructions
Making difficult poses like Chaturanga Dandasana easier to learn.
Learn Your Body with
Frictional Arm and Leg Strength
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Your iphone needs power in order to sense your touch. Proprioception needs muscle activity in order to sense your body.
Some simple exercises so that you can work towards the pistol squat gradually.
Arm supported yoga poses can be used to strengthen the arms and shoulders. Includes plank, chaturanga dandasana, downward dog, dolphin pose, side plank, wheel, reverse plank, table top pose.
This sequence of seated yoga poses includes lotus and virasana variations, janu sirsasana and marichyasana variations as well as more basic seated poses like bound angle, pigeon and seated forward bend.
These hip flexor stretches open up the fronts of the hips and can be used as a preparation for front to back splits. Bent knee hip stretches can be used to focus on rectus fermoris.
Strengthen your hands, your arms, glutes and hamstrings with these standing forward bend variations.
The small actions in this standing psoas stretch can be used to stretch both the upper and lower fibers of the psoas muscle.
Variations of the standing psoas stretch that use the same basic actions.
Here's a break down of the steps of Ashtanga Yoga Surya Namaskar A to make this sun salutation easier to learn and remember.
A reclining psoas stretch I learned from a Richard Freeman Workshop. The better you understand your anatomy the easier it is to work on your body effectively.
The hip stretches included on this page can be used to stretch and improve flexibility of the hip flexors, hip extensors, adductors and abductors.
Friction and pressure are two simple techniques that I use to help my students get stronger and more flexible. These simple techniques also offer a roadway into not only learning how to activate your muscles, but getting a feel for them and your body. Three challenging yoga poses that I use these techniques in are chaturanga, front splits and side splits. While they might not help you get all the way down into the splits, they'll help you feel stronger, and more integrated as you work towards them. And because I've got to pay for my daughters schooling this week, I'm offering a discount on the frictional muscle control videos. (First 100 people only can save over 30%).
Active stretching teaches you muscle control to not only improve flexibility but also body awareness. You'll learn how to adjust postures for better feel as well as more control through a broader range of motion.
Standing exercises for low back pain plus anatomy that can affect the low back and how to use that anatomical understanding.
Experience your body (and understand it) with sensational yoga poses.
Is it a bad idea to heel strike while barefoot running? What are the possible benefits of heel striking? When should you not heel strike?
These yoga poses for abs work on the abdominal muscles (and hips) in both standing positions and seated positions.
Here are the Ashtanga Standing Pose Vinyassas, with inhale movements highlighted in red.
Single joint hip flexors include iliacus, pectineus, obturators, gemelli and gluteus minimus. Use them to help improve your forward bends.
In this preparation for compass pose use your arms to pull your leg towards you for a seated hamstring stretch. To modify, use a strap.