Contributed by Kimberly Black RYT 500, YACEP
5 Yoga Poses for Happy & Healthy Hips
It’s likely you’ve experienced hip discomfort at some point in your life. Whether it’s tightness, pain or lack of mobility; hip issues are prevalent in our society. It’s commonly due to our lack of movement throughout the day and our imbalanced muscles. Think about it, a lot of jobs require us to be in one position throughout the entire workday, which leads us to having tight muscles. If you’re sitting all day at a desk, I’m willing to bet you have tight hip flexors, try taking small stretch breaks throughout the day. We also tend to favor one side of our body over the other, so we end up with muscle imbalances where one side is tighter or weaker than the other. Try these yoga poses to get your hips feeling looser, and more mobile.
Low lunge: Lower down to the left knee and step the right foot forward, aligning the knee over the ankle. Hinge the hips and right knee forward to feel a stretch in front of the left hip.
Half Monkey: From a low lunge release the hands to the ground while maintaining a straight spine. Shift the hips back as far as you can to feel a stretch behind the front leg.
Pigeon: From a table top position, slide the right knee and ankle forward. Angle the ankle out towards the opposite wrist. Slide the left leg back behind you and push your right glute towards the mat. If you can’t get your glute to the mat try placing a block beneath it to rest on, as shown in the picture.
90-90: This can be done as a modification for pigeon. Come to seated on the right glute with your right knee at a 90 degree angle in front of you. Bend the left leg behind you with the left knee also at a 90 degree angle. Hinge forward over the right leg while maintaining a flat back.
Lizard: From a low lunge, hinge forward and release the arms to the inside of your front leg. Try to lower all the way down to your elbows. You can modify by lowering the elbows to blocks or a bolster.
Hold each stretch for 5-7 complete breaths and make sure to perform on each side.