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Hip Alignment Exercises

by
author image Nick Ng
Nick Ng has been writing fitness articles since 2003, focusing on injury prevention and exercise strategies. He has covered health for "MiaBella" magazine. Ng received his Bachelor of Arts in communications from San Diego State University in 2001 and has been a certified fitness coach with the National Academy of Sports Medicine since 2002.
Hip Alignment Exercises
A woman is stretching before exercise. Photo Credit Dirima/iStock/Getty Images

Overview

According to Anthony Carey of Function First, your pelvis's position determines the alignment and function of your spine and outer extremities, which affects your posture when you move. Your pelvis tilts in three directions: forward and back, side to side, and rotation. If it goes off-balance in any one direction, such as having too much forward tilt or if one side of the hip is lifted, there are corrective exercises that you can do daily to re-align your hips.

Supine Frog Stretch

This exercise stretches your inner thighs by using gravity and relaxing your hips. It also activates your buttocks as the frog position is maintained.

Lie on the ground on your back with your arms out to the sides. Place the soles of both feet together; your knees should be pointing out like your arms. Relax your knees and let them hang as you feel your inner thighs and groin muscles stretch. To increase the stretch, bring your heels closer to your groin. It is okay to allow some curve in your lower spine. Hold the position until your feel relaxed in your groin.

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Supine Hip Rotation

This exercise stretches and opens up the buttocks and deep hip muscles and aligns the pelvis in relation to your spine. You need to do this against a wall or sturdy, flat support.

Lie on the floor with both feet on a wall with your legs and feet about hip-width apart. Bend your legs and hips at 90 degrees and lay your arms out to the sides. Cross your left ankle over your right knee, and make sure that your hips do not rotate as your move. Push your left knee toward the wall gently, using your left hip muscles, not your hand. Hold the position until you feel looser, and breathe deeply into the stretch. Do not overstretch the muscle or it will cause a stretch reflex, which causes the muscles to contract. Repeat on the other side.

Supine Abduction/Adduction

This exercise series consist of two pelvic exercises that strengthen the muscles around your hip joints. You need a non-elastic strap or belt, and a yoga block, cushion or something similar in shape and size. Hip abduction is moving your leg away from the center of your body. Hip adduction is moving your leg toward the center of your body. Both exercises work on abduction and adduction simultaneously.

Lie on your back with your knees bent and feet on the floor. Your feet, hips and knees should be in a straight line. Place the cushion between your ankles and put on the strap around your thighs, just above your knees. Put your arms to the sides with your palms up. Press your ankles together, and at the same time, push your knees out. Release and repeat the pattern for three sets of 10 reps each. Do not turn the bottom of your feet toward the cushion or lift your heels as you push.

In the next exercise, place the cushion between your knees and the strap around your ankles with your feet hip-width apart. You are now doing the opposite of the previous exercise by pulling your knees together and pushing your ankles out.

Squeeze your knees together and push against the strap with your ankles. Release and repeat the pattern for three sets of 10 reps each.

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References

  • "The Pain-Free Program"; Anthony Carey; 2005
  • "Stretch to Win"; Ann and Chris Frederick; 2006
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