People spends hours and hours sitting on their butts all day, everyday.
Overtime, this can weaken the muscles in the gluteal area, leading to many problems. Did you know that lower back pain is a direct outcome of having weak gluteal muscles? Aside from building their strength, keeping them supple and flexible is important, too.
If you are looking for a nice, deep stretch for your backside, look no further than the supine hip flexor stretch. This move will help to loosen any tight muscles you have and will also give your muscles a little bit of a workout.
- Lie in the supine position, face up, on an exercise mat or a firm, soft surface. Keep your legs straight out and relax your feet.
- Contract your abdominal muscles in my pulling your belly button in toward your spine. Keep your lower back in contact with the floor at all times. You don’t want to arch your back.
- Slide your left foot back until it reaches your butt or your hip area. By doing this, you will bend the knee. Keep the foot flat on the ground and the knee bent. Your right leg should still be extended out with the foot relaxed.
- Reach both of your hands down and gently grab the back of your left thigh and pull your knee in towards your chest. Remember to try to keep your back and hips on the mat and keep the right leg straight out. You will feel your glute muscles engaged. Pull the leg in toward the chest until you feel a good stretch.
- Hold this stretch for about a 30-45 second count. Switch legs and repeat on the other side. Continue this stretch about 2-5 times.
Here is a great video demonstration of how to perform the supine hip flexor stretch.
The Hip Flexors
The majority of people in this world do not pay attention to the hip flexor muscles until something goes wrong. Suddenly people start losing the range of motion in their hips and they can’t move as easily as they used to. Many people mistakenly think this is just a product of getting older but that is not necessarily true.
Exercising and stretching these muscles can absolutely prevent many problems later in life. The hip flexors are a large muscle groups located in the pelvic region. They make up your hips. The anatomical name is iliopsoas or psoas for short. There are three muscles involved in the iliopsoas: the iliacus, psoas major, and psoas minor.
Keeping all three of these muscles strong and flexible can avoid any problems. These muscles are responsible for many movements such as bending forward, lifting your legs, and even movements like walking.
Having a weak, inflexible set of hip flexors can lead to problems in the glutes, quads, and abdomen. To be sure that you avoid any problems that can come about, start practicing the supine hip flexor stretch.
Remember to breath throughout this exercise. Take long, deep breaths in and exhale slowly the whole time. To make the stretch a bit more challenging, pull the knee in toward the chest more. Be careful not to overstretch though. You don’t want to pull a muscle by stretching! You will feel this move in your glutes as well as your hips. You should perform this hip flexor stretch along with many others a couple times a week to ensure you are keeping them strong and supple. If you are feeling extra tight in that area, feel free to do this stretch more often!
How many older adults have you heard of getting hip replacements, or having bad hips, a bad lower back, or just a bad lower body in general? Too many! Nowadays, people are forgetting that the hips have muscles too and just like any other muscle in the body, need to be worked.
You may not get an aesthetically pleasing look from stretching your hip flexors but it will help keep you supple and mobile throughout life. The three muscles of the hip flexors, iliacus, psoas major, and psoas minor, all need to be stretched out every once in awhile. A great move for this is the supine hip flexor stretch. This move targets all of the muscles in the hip area! Do you feel your hips are tight? Try out this exercise and let us know how much better you feel after a few weeks of doing this stretch.