hip mobility exercises hip mobility exercises

10 Effective Hip Mobility Exercises

Most of us suffer from frail or inflexible hips in today’s world due to sitting for long hours. Once in a while, it is essential to stretch the hip region muscles for flexibility, which helps us move around with ease, prevent any pain in that region, and maximize our performance potential.

Even if one does not have any problems or concerns with their hips, they can also benefit from doing hip mobility exercises regularly as a part of their regular workout routine.

10 Effective Hip Mobility Exercises for You

Here is a list of 10 simple but effective hip mobility exercises and instructions on how to do them. These will enhance the hip’s flexibility, strengthen the muscles in the pelvic area1, and prevent any hip problems in the future.

1. Butterfly Stretch

The butterfly stretch2 is the most popular and preferred hip mobility exercise. This stretch has been practiced by many since forever and is very beneficial for our groin muscles and for improving hip rotation to the side.

While doing the butterfly stretch, it is very important to keep your back straight and upright as we do the stretch.

How to Do the Butterfly Stretch?

  • Sit up with your feet together and move your knees towards the ground.
  • Now, use your hands and slowly move your groin closer to the heels.
  • Hold this position for about a minute.

The key to doing the butterfly exercise is moving your chest up and leaning forward, and drawing the knees downward.

Note: If you feel tight while doing the butterfly pose, you can also use cushions or blocks under your thighs for support.

Watch the Video: Butterfly Pose, Yoga

Butterfly pose, Yoga

2. Frog Stretch

The frog stretch is a dynamic hip mobility exercise that involves a bit of intensive stretching for the hips.

It involves moving in and out of a stretch while squeezing the knees together as you bend backward and relaxing while you rock frontwards. After repeating the frog stretch few times, one can sit back and relax by stretching upwards for a minute.

How to Do the Frog Stretch?

  • Start with hands and knees, bringing your knees as far as it is comfortable for you.
  • Now, roll back and forth in that same position.

FROG STRETCH for Squats: Squat specific hip mobility exercies & drill - MOVEMENT & MOBILITY

3. Pigeon Stretch

The pigeon stretch3 is another type of hip mobility exercise that enhances the mobility of the hip and the spine’s flexibility and hamstring.4

How to do the Pigeon Stretch?

  • Bend your back knee to a 90-degree angle. Then bend your back knee or extend it as per your convenience.
  • Then, rotate the back hip towards your front heel and your back foot.
  • Keep your chest upright and only bear as much weight as you can comfortably.
  • When you feel comfortable with the knee bent, you can work on achieving the full pigeon pose.

Watch the Video: How to Do The pigeon Pose|the Right Way

How To Do Pigeon Pose | The Right Way | Well+Good

4. Piriformis Stretch

This stretch is named after the piriformis5, which is a small muscle located deep inside the buttocks.

Usually, this muscle gets pretty tight from sitting the whole day. Hence, performing this hip mobility exercise can help loosen it up and increase the hip’s flexibility.

How to Do the Piriformis Stretch?

  • Cross one leg over the other in such a way the knee crosses the thigh
  • Now, pull the crossed knee towards the shoulder at the opposite end, thereby stretching the piriformis muscle.
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By: PRPicturesProduction/Shutterstock

5. Lying Hip Rotations

Lying hip rotations are the oldest yet the easiest hip mobility exercises to warm up and increase the pelvic region’s flexibility.

How to Do the Lying Hip Rotation?

  • Firstly, bend both your legs and lie on your back.
  • The next step is to cross the ankle of one leg above the knee of your opposite leg.
  • Now, move in and out slowly by rotating the hip in and out.

While performing the lying hip rotation, you can also use your hand for hold and assistance for pressing into the knee.

Watch the Video: How To Do a Lying Hip Rotation Stretch

How to do a Lying Hip Rotation stretch

6. Clamshell Exercise

Clamshell exercise is also a type of hip mobility exercise that helps build strength in your thighs, hips, and glutes. It stabilizes the pelvic muscles and helps relieve the tightness in the back caused by sitting all day long.

The best thing about the clamshell exercise is that one can experiment with variations.

How to do the Clamshell Exercise?

  • Lie down on your side with bent knees along with a resistance band tied around your lower thighs.
  • Rotate the top leg as many times as you can and take pauses whenever you need
  • Now, lower to the starting positions.

You can perform Clamshell exercises should be done 1 to 3 sets of 8 – 15 repetitions.

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By: Maridav/Shutterstock

7. Frankenstein Walk

Frankenstein walk is a warm-up exercise to enhance the range of motion in hips, quads, and hamstrings.

This hip mobility exercise also helps us attain a good posture and prevents us from bending at the waist.

How to Do the Frankenstein Walk?

  • Stand upright with your arms extended before, with palms facing downwards.
  • As you move forward, swing in your right leg upright, thereby creating a 90-degree angle with your body.
  • Now lower your right leg to the floor, and then swing your left leg up in the same way.
  • Continue the same process for about a minute, then change the direction as per your convenience.

8. Mini Squats

Mini squats are one of the easiest and quickest hip mobility exercises. They do not take much of our time and can be done anywhere in a matter of a few minutes.

How to Do Mini Squats?

  • Stand upright with feet shoulder-width apart.
  • Hold on to a wall, table, or chair for support.
  • Now, gently lower the body by bending the knees until they reach the toe level.
  • Hold in the same position for a few seconds,

Mini squats are to be repeated 5 to 10 times.

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By: Roman Samborskyi/Shutterstock

9. Kneeling Lunge

Kneeling lounge6 is a type of hip mobility exercise that solely relies on the positioning of the foot.

How to Make the Kneeling Lunge?

  • Get into the lunge position at first, with one knee about hip-width apart from the elevated leg.
  • Keep your hips square and your hips tall.
  • You can pull back the knee up off the ground to make the stretch harder.

You can do this hip mobility exercise by supporting one leg with a chair’s help with the other leg behind you, but emphasis must be laid on opening your rear hip flexor by squeezing the rear glute.

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By: antoniodiaz/Shutterstock

10. Squatting Internal Rotations

Squatting Internal Rotations is a dynamic hip mobility exercise that enhances blood circulation and blood flow in the body.

But unlike the other hip mobility exercises, this position must be held static rather, and one should keep moving and work ourselves throughout the movement.

How to do the Squatting Internal Rotations?

  • Start with a deep squat position.
  • Now, rotate one knee inward and downwards towards the ground.
  • If you cannot find a comfortable squat position, you can also do squatting internal rotations with a small stool.
How to do a Squatting Internal Rotation stretch

Read more about hip mobility exercises and their benefits

Hip Mobility Exercises: Practice Recommendations

How To Practice?

In the case of hip mobility exercises, there are no hard and fast rules. However, there are a certain set of guidelines for a more effective workout routine.

It is recommended to spend only 20 minutes a day unless you have a devoted session on stretching alone.

How Often Should You Practice?

Hip mobility exercises can be practiced every day if you can. They are light, and the chances of overdoing it are also really low. The best part about hip mobility exercises is that they can be modified and customized at our convenience to suit our timings.

Some general principles while training:

  • It is best to keep the sessions short, quick, and frequent
  • You can put properties like chairs, and stools best to use.

When Should You Practice?

A huge advantage of these hip mobility exercise routines is that you can practice them at any time. While some people practice it early in the morning as the first thing when they wake up, other people take it up just before hitting the bed.

But the truth is, you can do these hip mobility exercises whenever you want at your convenience.

Best times to work on hip mobility exercises

  • First thing in the morning, as you get up from bed
  • Along with your daily workout routine, before or after that, or whenever it feels best for you.

Tight hips can bring many inconveniences and stop you from doing many things that you really like. Performing these exercises for a few minutes every day regularly helps relieve pain, increase mobility, and strengthen the muscles in the pelvic region.

Although these hip mobility exercises may cause temporary discomfort in the initial stages, one must slow down the pace or stop it together in case of prolonged pain.

It is best to consult a doctor before performing any hip mobility exercises for individuals who have undergone a hip replacement or any surgery.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Can You Perform Hip Mobility Exercises at Home?

Absolutely, you may perform the majority of hip mobility exercises at home without any specific tools. To make sure you’re exercising appropriately and safely, it’s however always a good idea to speak with a medical expert or a licensed trainer.

2. What Types of Hip Mobility Exercises Are There?

Exercises for improving hip mobility include lunges, pigeon positions, glute bridges, hip circles, and hip openers.

3. How Frequently Should I Practice Hip Mobility?

Hip mobility exercises should be performed every day if not a few times each week. Your particular demands and objectives will determine the frequency.

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  1. Bordoni, Bruno, Kavin Sugumar, and Stephen W. Leslie. “Anatomy, abdomen and pelvis, pelvic floor.” (2018). ↩︎
  2. Lederer, Mag Stephan. “Butterfly Pose: Benefits and How to Do It Correctly.” ↩︎
  3. Kumar, Amar. “Effect of Static Stretch of HIP Flexors Muscles on Vertical Jump-A Contrary.” Indian Journal of Physical Education, Sports Medicine & Exercise Science 16.1and2 (2016): 5-7. ↩︎
  4. Woodley, Stephanie J., and Susan R. Mercer. “Hamstring muscles: architecture and innervation.” Cells tissues organs 179.3 (2005): 125-141. ↩︎
  5. Windisch, Gunther, Eva Maria Braun, and Friedrich Anderhuber. “Piriformis muscle: clinical anatomy and consideration of the piriformis syndrome.” Surgical and radiologic anatomy 29 (2007): 37-45. ↩︎
  6. Galvin, Catherine R., et al. “Squatting, lunging and kneeling provided similar kinematic profiles in healthy knees—a systematic review and meta-analysis of the literature on deep knee flexion kinematics.” The Knee 25.4 (2018): 514-530. ↩︎

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