Whether it is one traumatic event or multiple small events, the feelings of fear, anxiety and sadness are stored at the hips until we bring them to the surface and allow a release. The longer you suppress emotion, the tighter the grasp. Some may refer to these emotions as being “stuck” or “trapped” in the body.
To be clear, when we talk about “hips”, we’re talking about all the big and small muscles in your bottom, and the sides of your hips…the muscles responsible for lifting your leg to the side, either with your knee facing forward, or your knee facing side (rotated out, also called external rotation). If you speak anatomy, we’re talking about your gluteus medius, minimus, and maximus, your piriformis and all the other little rotators. The hips are complicated…there’s a lot in there!
Hip opening poses help to open and loosen the joints and muscles around the hips. They help to keep the pelvis and hips in proper alignment, preventing strain and tightness in that area. They also have been known to reduce stress and anxiety, so they’re not just physically beneficial, but emotionally as well.
8 best Yoga poses for hips
Pilates for Hips
Do you ever wonder why you do all that side-lying leg work for your hips in Pilates? Why does it feel so tight and burn so much? These are some of the most important exercises you can do for strengthening your hips and supporting your hips, pelvis, low back, knees.
If you think about what runners, cyclists, and walkers are doing, their legs are all moving forward and back. It’s rare that most people will actually move their legs out to the sides. And as much as we love to practice yoga, it doesn’t do much side leg strengthening either so it’s just as important to have a Pilates practice…they compliment each other very nicely.
Pilates clams ; Set your feet up in the same line with your hips and your shoulders and head. So everything is in one line. Prop your head up with your hand behind your head, or a pillow if you have neck or shoulder problems. Bend both knees and stack them on top of each other. Lift just the top knee, being careful not to roll your top hip back
Pilates straight leg lifts: straighten your top leg, and lift it up about a foot off the floor, then do small pulses up and down with the knee pointing forward. Try to keep that straight leg in a straight line underneath you, rather than forward of your hip.
Thread the needle or Reclined Pigeon : Just as important as it is to strengthen those muscles, you want to stretch them. This is an excellent stretch for sciatica. You can do this stretch seated, standing, or lying down. If you’ve just finished your side leg series, you can roll over on to your back, Bend both knees, bottoms of the feet on the floor, and cross you right ankle over your left knee. Now thread your right hand between the hole you’ve created in your legs, and your left hand on the left side of your left thigh….clasp your hands together and pull that left thigh toward your chest. You should feel a stretch in your right hip. You can also place your left foot flat on a wall and use the wall to hold up your legs…this allows you to relax your upper body. Flex your right toes back toward your right knee to protect your knee.
The Best Exercises within Fitness That Will Help Strengthen + Slim Your Hips