HOP MOBILITY (CONTINUED)Feb 10, 2021
Following up from the last stiff hips blog! In the last one, I went over a lot of info and some good banded drills to try, so make sure to check that out if you haven’t already! In that blog, though, I also talk about how LOADING an area is often the answer versus trying to stretch it out (If you haven’t read my blog where I explain what the best way to actually gain what you’re going for with stretching is, check it out here.) So, without further adieu, here are some of my go to drills depending on where I feel tight!
Don’t know where to start? I would say the most common hip tightness complaint I get is in the front/hip flexor area. Often it’s lack of strength/activation of the hip flexors - check out this blog to read more on that - so the elevated psoas march below (or any drill on the linked blog in that paragraph) would be a good starting point and then try the others on here and see what helps the most!
Hip 90/90 switch - I usually do this after the above when I’ve been feeling stiff or if it’s not bad, I do this a few times as kind of a maintenance drill (without the PAIL/RAIL one) before lifting. You can add a weight held to your chest with this one, as well. Biggest thing here is just like in the PAIL/RAIL drill from the last hip blog, you’ve gotta be at 90/90 on both legs and completely upright. Can’t switch without leaning back or rounding? Work in a partial range and hold your end range for a few seconds and gradually try to work into it! It may get frustrating, but it’ll get better as you work on it!
Adductor Lean Backs - If I ever feel stiff in the front of my hips after a trail run or a heavy squat day, this and the next one are my go-to drills. Keep your trunk nice and tall with a weight held to your chest. Place a pad under the down knee if needed. The straight out leg is the one being targeted. You can change foot position (flat, toes up, somewhere in between) to slightly change where you feel this.
Elevated Psoas March - If you missed my blog on hip flexor “tightness”, check it out here. If you read it, then you know that they often need strength! By adding in the elevated surface, we’re getting more posterior chain activation, as well as working on low back endurance - all of which helps decrease overall stiffness! You do have to keep your hips up to maintain a straight line from shoulders - hips - feet for this to be done correctly. Including as you pull one foot up. If this is too much of a challenge just yet, check out the regular psoas marches on this hip flexor blog and work up to these. (My awesome patient, Nicole, demoing here!)
Box IR with Ball - These can help if you’re feeling stiff in the bottom of your squat, which requires internal rotation of the hips. Note I said “can”…stiffness here can be many things, but I do see limited active range of motion be the cause of that stiffness enough, that trying this is warranted. Note that I said active range of motion (ROM). If you have limited motion even passively, the IR banded mobs followed by this are awesome. But then there’s also people like me who have great mobility there, but sometimes if the hip is ticked off, my motor control of that ROM goes out the window. These get it right back! The ball is held in between your knees to get that muscle activation (aka loading) going on throughout the range.
The box (or couch or whatever you use) is to help make sure your staying in the plane of motion and not “cheating” somehow
Swoops - Yup. super fancy technical name here. Kinda like the grave digger exercise…ish…hence the name on YouTube. But this variation turns into into more of a nerve glide. Wanted to add this because sometimes it’s the nervous system that needs some love. So if you went through these are didn’t notice a difference, try this one. I’ve seen it done in CrossFit gyms as a warm up for the hammies before, but really it’s a fantastic nerve glide! Still feel tight in the backside after these? Then weighted negative RDLs might be your answer.
Alrighty! Hope y’all found this helpful!! If so, please let me know by commenting below or messaging me. Main reason for stopping blogging recently was lack of feedback so I didn’t know if these were helping until a few of y’all messaged asking when more were gonna be released! Ya gotta speak up and let me know if you like the content or what you wanna hear!! Gonna try to get back to releasing a blog once a month for y’all :)
Megan (and Jinx)