Hip Health and Mobility for Paddlers

 

Driving to the river, paddling, driving home, relaxing while watching TV, heading to your ‘desk job’ the next day . . . what do all these things have in common? SITTING!!!

Causes of tight hips:
Sitting is the #1 cause of tight hips. We spend the majority of our day sitting. Over-sitting causes our hip flexors to become weak and tight, leading to limited and/or painful movement. Tight hips also cause back pain because it ‘shuts off’ your hamstring and butt muscles, leading to over compensation of the lower back.

Solution to tight, immobile hips?
Well, um . . . STRETCHING and MOVING! Below are a few exercises you can do daily to improve hip mobility and strength.

Hip Mobility

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=OC_FblvhKD4[/youtube]

Hip Stretches
Make sure you hold all your stretches for 20-30 seconds. Any stretch held for less than 20 seconds does NOTHING.
Runners Stretch (Hip Flexor Opener)

Key points:
• Keep your front knee over your ankle or a little behind your ankle
• Take your pelvis and tilt it forward for a more intense stretch in the front of the hip

Piriformis stretch (Outer thigh stretch)

Key points:
• Place one foot on the wall with opposite foot on your “wall knee”
• Keep your “wall knee” over your “wall hip” (proper alignment)
• Keep your upper body relaxed and breathe through the stretch to feel the release.

Hamstring Stretch

Key Points:
• Keep your extended leg FLAT against the floor
• Keep your back completely flat
• Lean forward from the hips not by rounding the back

Lower Back Release

Quad stretch


Key Points:
• To intensify the stretch just push pressure from your foot into your hand
• Keep your knee pointed down to the floor
• Push your pelvis forward while holding this stretch

So . . . here is your routine for increased health and mobility in your hips. It’s all about balance. The more we play, the more we need to balance all that play with body relaxation and release. No excuses now . . . take 10 minutes a day, do this routine and feel better!

* Please see your doctor or a local personal trainer before trying any movement that may causes pain or discomfort or if you have any questions.

Heather Herbeck
Crossfit Level 1 Coach
Personal Trainer
JK Team

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