A few minutes of hip mobility work could help you break out of a fitness plateau.
While scrolling through TikTok or looking around the gym, you may see some unusual-looking exercises. Think slow leg circles, or sitting while gently moving the knees and torso side to site.
It may not look like it’s doing a whole lot for the body, but this kind of move is actually so important! Whole body health is trending (yay!), so more people are understanding the importance of hip mobility and adding it to their fitness routine.
We’ll break down the basics for you in this article… and show you some example moves to try!
What is hip mobility and why is it important?
The hips are the stable base that makes sure the spine is upright while also allowing movement in our lower body. Poor hip mobility is when the hips can’t move in their full range of motion. Not only is the feeling of tight hips uncomfy, but it can also create poor posture, which often leads to injury.
Mobility is key if you want to improve your workouts.
Better hip mobility means better squats and deadlifts! Tight hips cause discomfort during these moves and can really restrict your range of motion. Doing a few minutes of hip mobility work is a great way to warm up on leg day. Over time, you’ll squat deeper and perfect your deadlift hinge.
What causes tight hips?
If your hips are tight, it means there’s tension in your hip flexor muscles. Some people naturally have more tightness than others, but sitting for long periods of time is a huge factor when it comes to hip pain.
About one in four Americans sit for more than 8 hours per day. That’s a lot of sitting, which means a lot of tightness in the hips!
Tips to improve hip mobility
The good news is, you can gain range of motion in your hips, decrease your risk for injury, AND improve your workout.
Hip mobility exercises help you move your joints through their full range of motion. Doing these dynamic exercises can also help loosen up and strengthen muscles that have gotten tight and weak from hours of sitting at a desk.
These moves may seem simple, but don’t let them fool you. They can really burn! That’s because they strengthen muscles that are often overlooked.
While popular in the world of physical therapy, it wasn’t until recently that hip mobility became a part of the mainstream.
Hip mobility is all over the fitness side of social media. #hipmobility on TikTok has over 385 million views and #hipmobilitychallenge has almost 50 million views! Users are seeing the benefits of doing these exercises not just for post-injury therapy, but to prevent injury in the first place!
Ready to start your journey to greater hip mobility?
Everyone can benefit from hip mobility work, whether you spend hours in the gym or zero. Taking just a few minutes each week to improve your mobility can really improve your overall health.
Here are some example exercises for you to start your hip mobility journey. These exercises are beginner-friendly and you can do them anywhere.
Spread your legs wide and lunge deeply from one side to the other, being sure to keep the lunging knee in line with your toes. If you can’t get super low, don’t sweat it! Your flexibility and range of motion will improve if you stay consistent. Start with 5 per side, holding each rep for 1 or 2 seconds.
90-90 Hip Rotation
Sit with both legs bent at a 90 degree angle, one hip rotated internally and one rotated externally (the pic above can help guide you!). Gently lift your knees and rotate from one side to another, keeping your back as straight as possible. Continue slowly moving from side to side, keeping the hips as steady as possible and your front leg parallel for about 20 seconds.
Fire Hydrant Circles
On all fours, carefully lift one leg up and to the side so your knee and hip are in line, bending at a 90 degree angle. Slowly draw imaginary circles with your knee, doing your best to keep your hips square to the ground. Start with 20 seconds per side.
Up for a hip mobility challenge?
Try this hip mobility challenge from Cassey! As you work on your mobility, you can repeat this challenge and see how you’ve improved!
@blogilates I actually did it 15 more times after this to see if i could do it without falling but perfection is so i am posting this instead. Outfit from @POPFLEX #hipmobilitychallenge #fitnesschallenge ♬ BOOM Doja cat – You seem lost, follow me
We want to see your favorite moves!
Snap some pics or videos of you trying them out and tag @blogilatesdotcom. Let’s inspire each other on our movement journeys!