5. Happy Baby Yoga Pose
Yoga poses are exceptionally effective in for hip extension; many are designed particularly for opening up your hips. The beauty of yoga positions for stretching is that they are easily adapted to your level of ability. For example, this pose provides a gentle stretch.
- Lie on your mat and pull your knees to your chest.
- Place your hands on outsides of your feet, opening your knees and hips wide.
- Press your feet into hands while simultaneously pulling down on your feet to create resistance.
- Breathe deeply and hold for 30 seconds or so.
6. Head-to-Knee Stretch
You can tailor this yoga position to match how deep a stretch you can comfortably reach.
- Begin seated with your back straight and your legs out in front of you.
- Bend your left toes outward and bend your knee to bring your left foot to the inside of your right thigh.
- Draw your bum away from your sit bones. Tilt your pelvis inward to straighten your back.
- Place your arms above your head and exhale while bending at the hips to bring your chest towards your leg. Rest your hand on your ankle, shin, or foot.
- Hold for a few breaths and repeat on the other side.
7. Deep Squat Hip Stretch
This is a very effective exercise when done properly. Hip flexor muscles are fully engaged when performing a squat. They work opposite your hip extensors to maintain pelvic motion and stability while doing the exercise. Watch the video below to see how it’s done—it’s important to do the stretch properly to avoid putting too much strain on the lower back.
- Stand tall with your feet wide apart and squat down as deep as you can, placing your weight on your heels. Your bum should be at the same height as your ankles.
- Adjust if need be by widening your stance.
- Press your palms together, resting your thumbs at the center of your chest and your elbows on the inside of each knee. Look forward and hold for a few breaths.
- Look right as you push your left elbow into your right thigh. Hold for a few breaths and repeat on the opposite side.
8. Sumo Squat to Stand
This is a deep squat that lifts into a hamstring stretch. You hold on to your toes for balance as you rise to standing, hinging at the hip. As we mentioned, the hamstrings and hip flexors work together for pelvic stability and mobility.
- Start in a deep squat position with your back straight, chest up, and your hands holding your toes. Your weight should be on your heels.
- Push your knees back and bend at the hip to bring your head and shoulder towards the floor. Don’t let go of your toes.
- Repeat 5-10 times as needed.