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How To Loosen Tight Hips And Lower Back

Hip Mobility Exercises To Loosen Tight Hips

How to Loosen Up those Tight Hips and Lower Back #114

If you spend a large part of your day seated at a desk, you may experience tight hips.

The human body is designed to transfer movement from one joint to the next, so when you have joints that are limited by mobility, stability, or strength, you open yourself up to a higher risk of injury, says Cody Braun, Openfit fitness expert.

These hip mobility exercises can help you increase your hip mobility, loosen tight muscles, lessen your risk for injury, and even reduce pain caused by long periods of sitting.

For more exercises to help with mobility check out OpenfitsYoga 52 program, try it free today!

How To Strengthen Your Hip Flexors:

The easiest place to start is with active warm-up drills that are often underrated and underutilised, says Holland. Two to three minutes of high knees, bum kicks, skipping and running backwards will open up the hips in the front, side and back planes of motion, he explains. Holland also suggests doing strength work in different planes of motion to keep all the muscles in and around your hip flexors especially your glutes firing correctly.

You cant have good hip flexion if your glutes are tight or weak, says Nurse, so its very important that youre always stretching and strengthening the front of your hip flexor and the back, which are the glute muscles. Unilateral exercises such as step-ups and single-leg toe touches are particularly effective at strengthening the glutes, while walking lunges, lateral lunges, air squats and jump squats will zero in on all the muscles surrounding the hips.

Whether you are at the gym or heading out for a run, these five moves will strengthen and open your hips, keep them loose in the long term and not only make you a better runner, but also make running feel better to you.

Release Tensionback Neck Or Knee Pain Try These Foam Roller Exercises

In addition to back issues, Johnson says that hip tightness is often accompanied by tight inner thighs and weak outer thighs, which can bring the knees inward provoking medial knee pain and affecting gate. If you notice knee pain specifically in the inside of the knees , this may be a sign that you have tight hips. Furthermore, tight glutes can contribute to reduced hip rotation. This decreases mobility of the hips and therefore forces other muscles down the chain to overwork , Johnson explains.

Knowing some of the consequences of tight hips, its not hard to see why loosening them up is so important! Especially if you are spending long stretches of time sitting.

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When Should You Practice

This routine makes for a good warm-up or cool down for your other training, but it can really be practiced at any time. Some people enjoy doing this routine when they first wake up to shake off the cobwebs, or just before going to sleep to get a nice stretch in. Really, you can do this routine whenever it works best for you.

The best times to work on hip mobility:

  • in the morning to get your day started
  • as part of your regular training doesnt matter if its before or after, just fit it in wherever it feels best or you

Skip to the section you want: Hip Mobility Routine | Modified Routine for Limited Hip Mobility | Exercise Descriptions | Practice Recommendations | Why Hip Mobility Matters | Hip Mobility FAQ |

Tight Hips May Also Be Caused By:

Yoga Sequence: Practice At Home ~ Healthy Lifestyle
  • standing after long periods of sitting
  • A tipped pelvis, which creates a structural imbalance
  • Postural habits like leaning over into one hip or leaning forward into both hips when standing
  • sleeping all night on the same side of the body
  • having one leg longer than the other
  • Tight hips may also flare up when you perform lower body exercises, like squats and deadlifts.

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How To Improve Flexibility And Strength

There are lots of simple stretches and exercises you can do to improve flexibility and strength in your lower back.

Focus on lengthening and extending the spine. This helps to relieve compression in the lower back. Stretching the hamstrings is also beneficial.

In addition, you should choose exercises that focus on working the hips, core, and gluteal muscles.

Doing daily activities such as walking, swimming, or yoga is recommended. Put forth dedicated effort into being active as often as possible. Consistently doing exercises and activities to loosen up your lower back will usually yield positive results within a few weeks.

Here are nine exercises you can add to your daily routine to help strengthen your lower back and improve flexibility.

This exercise increases flexibility, relieves tension, and helps to loosen the lower back and hip muscles. You can also engage your core muscles if comfortable.

Muscles used:

  • erector spinae
  • pelvic muscles
  • Stand with your feet slightly wider than your hips and your hands on your hips.
  • Start by gently moving your hips from side to side.
  • Then slowly rotate your hips in one direction, making big circles.
  • Do at least 10 circles.
  • Repeat in the opposite direction.
  • Lie on your back with both legs extended.
  • Lift your right leg up so its as straight as possible, keeping a slight bend in the knee. You can bend your left knee and press into your foot for support.
  • Hold this stretch for 30 seconds.
  • Repeat on the left side.
  • Sit All Day Try These Desk Stretches To Loosen Your Hips

    Weve heard all about sitting being the new smoking. On average, people spend 70 percent of their waking hours sitting, according to research. And among the laundry list of health issues caused by prolonged sitting is tight hips.

    Research shows that musculoskeletal complaints are among the most prevalent symptoms in the general population and according to one study, about 15 percent of older adults complain of significant hip pain on most days.

    This may not immediately strike you as a huge concern, but having tight hips may actually be the underlying cause of seemingly unrelated chronic pain or discomfort.

    According to Danny Johnson, corrective exercise specialist and owner of a personal training and rehabilitation center in London, every joint in the body needs a good muscle balance surrounding it in order to function optimally. Tight hip flexors and tight hamstrings can bring the hips into an anterior pelvic tilt and cause back pain, putting pressure on and compressing the lumbar spine discs, he says. This explains why tight hips and the area around the hips can pull the low spine out of alignment. It will also tighten up the lumbar and can provoke spasms in the back as these muscles will try to constantly stabilize and will fatigue, Johnson says.

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    How Often Should You Practice

    Every day, if you can! This routine is gentle enough that you dont have to worry about overdoing it . And the modified version of the routine gives you good options for practicing in any chair, even if youre at work or doing other things.

    General principles for training frequency:

    • short, frequent sessions are best
    • make use of the chair variations at work

    Hip Flexor Tightness And Why It Is Killing Your Low Back

    Yoga for Tight Hips (And lower back ) | Episode 1 – Loosen | Yoga With Yana

    All of us have woken up from a long night sleep with that nagging pain through your lower back. We pull our knees to our relief. We try and rotate our lumbar spine hoping for our pain to reduce.nothing. Maybe its that pesky piriformis muscle we all keep hearing about. But none of this is alleviating the pain we are having.

    What if that pain is stemming from a place very few of people associate with lower back pain? We need to look outside the box in order to track down the illusive nature of our pain. Enter the iliopsoas muscle, better known as the hip flexor. The iliopsoas runs from the front of our lumbar spine and hip bone to the front and top of our femur. This muscle being tight and bound down not only pulls our hip bone forward, but also pulls our lumbar spine into a hyperextended position increasing the joint pressure. Hence that nagging low back pain we just cant shake.

    Cranking on our lower back to stretch out or performing only stability exercises such as pelvic tilts, crunches, or bridges can help out some aspects of lower back pain, but if you are not assessing your hip flexor mobility you could be missing the boat to fixing this problem. Core stabilization is a very important part of treatment and will assist with maintain decompression for the long term, but only if you are concominantly working to elongate tight and restricted soft tissues.

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    Reverse Active Straight Leg Raise

  • Lie down on your back and bring your legs up, keeping them straight. Your back and legs should make as close to a 90º angle as possible.
  • Using a strap or band, keep one leg straight up while slowly lowering the other to the floor. Keep your core tight during this process because thatâs what stabilizes the spine and pelvis.
  • Repeat 5 times on each leg.
  • Kneeling Side Bend Stretch

    Simple yet effective, the kneeling side bend stretches your hips, inner thighs, groin, and abdominals. Use a mat to prevent knee pain.

    • Kneel on a mat with your legs together. Keep core tight and back straight.
    • Extend right leg to the side . Extend left arm toward the ceiling and rest right arm on right leg.
    • Slowly lean left arm and torso to the right until you feel a stretch. Your hips should remain facing forward.
    • Hold for at least 30 seconds and up to 2 minutes.
    • Repeat on the other side.

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    Why Are Hip Stretches Important For Seniors

    When your hip muscles and connective tissues are tight, your whole body suffers. Indeed, if the back is tight, the hip muscles may have to overcompensate in some way and either develop too much flexibility or too much tightness in order to protect themselves.

    If the hips become too tight, the back and the knees may become prone to injury and the individual will certainly become more prone to falls.

    Strong hip muscles are essential for good mobility, but before you can enhance the strength in your hips, you must have adequate range-of-motion to move them and use them. Thatâs why hip stretches are so important for seniors.

    Anatomy of the Hip Joint

    The hip is a ball-and-socket joint formed where the thigh bone meets the pelvis. The thigh bone has a big, ball-shaped head where it fits into a socket in the side of the pelvis. Some large, thick ligaments, muscles, and tendons hold the ball of the hip joint in its socket and keeps it from becoming dislocated.

    Sometimes, the muscles, tendons, and ligaments get tight if the person doesnât stretch or do exercises regularly to keep them loose.

    The hip joint makes it so the leg has the ability to move in several directions. If your hips have limited range-of-motion due to poor flexibility, you may notice that they canât move in certain directions. Before you can strengthen the hip muscles, you must stretch them and make them flexibile. Otherwise, the muscles wonât be able to move and canât be properly exercised.

    Lifestyle Tips To Release Tight Hips

    Hip Flexor Stretches: Are your tight hips putting a cramp ...
  • Sitting is a huge culprit for tight hips. The more you can move, the better your hips will feel, even if its as small as walking to the office break room for an extra cup of coffee.
  • Soft, cushy couches can cause major hip tightness. Not only do our muscles tighten up because were sitting, but were often sitting with bad, comfortable posture. Consider walking around the neighborhood in the evening rather than watching TV.
  • The more often you sit on the floor, the better youll feel. Our body is made for this. It will loosen up over time plus, the supporting postural muscles will get stronger.
  • Most of all, know that having tight hips is a common challenge faced by yogis and non-yogis alike. Allow yourself to take time to explore stretches and strengthening exercises. Work with what helps your body feel good and youll eventually find your hips opening like never before.
  • Related Questions

    Does unlocking tight hips cause emotions to release? Psychology Today says yes. The body can store emotions long after were done experiencing them. So, know that its perfectly normal to be cranky or sad after a hip-opening yoga class.

    Can tight muscles also be a sign of weakness? Typically, tight muscles are a sign that the muscle is getting more stressed than the looser muscles around it. This often means that its stronger relative to the others.

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    Kneeling Hip Flexor Stretch With Rotation

    • Kneel on your right knee with your left leg forward and bent at 90 degrees. For balance, place your hands on your hips.

    • Contract your glutes to flatten your lower back and transfer your weight forward to increase the stretch in the front of your right leg.

    • Then cross your arms over your chest and turn your torso and upper body to the left.

    • Keep your glutes slightly contracted to avoid tilting your pelvis forward. Hold for 30 to 60 seconds.

    • Then turn your torso and upper body to the right. Again, keep your glutes slightly contracted to avoid tilting your pelvis forward. Hold for 30 to 60 seconds.

    • Switch legs and repeat.

    • Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and place your palms on your backside.

    • Lean back into your palms until you feel a gentle pull on the front of your hip flexors and gentle pressure in your lower spine. Inhale, exhale, then return to standing. This is one rep.

    • Continue for 10 to 20 reps.

    Tip: Widen your stance if you feel unsteady.

    Hip And Hamstring Tightness Solutions

    Dr. McNally explains that stretching exercises act as the first line of treatment for hip flexor and hamstring tightness. You could start with gentle stretches that target these areas. He notes that there are a multitude of stretches that will help. The one that works best for the individual person is the one that they are comfortable doing so that they will repeat it enough to make a difference. He recommends warming up the muscles first to get the best results from the stretches.

    An easy place to start is any kind of forward fold to stretch out the hamstrings. Stand up straight, or sit with your legs extended in front of you. Then, reach your fingers toward your toes . Dont bounce, but hold the position for a few seconds, then repeat five to 10 times.

    For your hip flexors, high lunge, low lunge, or yogas Warrior I pose can all prove effective.

    The Warrior I pose from yoga opens up the hip flexors at the front of your pelvis.

    Then, if you are not seeing enough results from stretching on your own, you could progress to a guided stretching program with physical therapy. Dr. McNally explains, Stretching does not work for everyone, but it is the first step in the process and often the only one that is needed. He adds that surgery is reserved for cases that do not respond to supervised stretching.

    In this situation, he would recommend:

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    Hamstring And Hip Flexor

    For immediate back tension relief, you can rely on continuous hamstring and hip flexor stretches.

    It not only loosens your stiff lower back but also improves your posture.

    As hip flexors are the key muscles in moving your lower body, hip flexor stretch will help prevent tearing of muscles because of being too tight or due to a sudden movement.

    Steps to Perform Hamstring Pose:

    1: Lie down on your back.

    2: Loop a towel or resistance band around your left toe and hold the ends with both hands.

    3: Slowly pull the band and lift your leg straight up, keeping your right leg on the floor.

    4: Bring your left leg up until you feel a stretch in your back and calf.

    5: Hold it for a minimum of 15 seconds then relax.

    6: Switch legs and repeat at least 5 times.


    Steps to Perform Hip flexor:

    1: Kneel on both knees with the bottom on your heels.

    2: Press your arms on the mat while leaning forward.

    3: Place your hands shoulder-width apart and avoid elbow locking by bending it slightly.

    4: Bring your left knee forward between your arms and place the left foot on the ground making a 90-degree angle.

    5: Straighten your upper body and use your hands to balance.

    6: Stretch your right leg backward and press the right knee into the mat.

    7: Rest the top of your right foot on the mat.

    8: Slowly try to lean forward a little and maintain it for 20 seconds.

    9: Return to the starting position and repeat it with the opposite leg.


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    6 Easy Stretches for Tight Hips and Low Back Pain

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    “Being an athlete all my life and having endured multiple knee surgeries due to blowing out ACL’s in both knees, I later started to develop a hip issue in my right hip due to the years of wear and tear. It actually got so bad it was hard for me to perform as an athlete as well as be a productive coach for my clients.

    After getting an MRI to have it checked out, I realized I had a degenerative arthritic condition in the hip that is not reversible. Surgery was not an option I wanted to go through so I contacted Rick Kaselj to see if he had something for me. When I started to apply the strategies from Unlock Your Hip Flexors it helped me re-balance my pelvis and hip joint to where I couldn’t even tell I had an issue anymore.

    These days I’m stronger and faster than ever and still competing in sports. Rick gave me the ability to perform at my highest level as a coach and regain the athletic ability I had lost over the years from wear and tear. I’ve been using Rick’s strategies for years to help myself manage and recover from injuries as well as countless members of the fitness community. I couldn’t recommend this product enough!”

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