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3 Stretches For Better Hip Mobility

The idea is to take our hips through internal rotation, external rotation, and then a deep general stretch that includes the glutes and the connective tissue fascia that ties in with the lower back.

All 3 stretches can be held for as long as is comfortable.

The hip joint is quite similar in design and function to the shoulder joint - both are "ball-in-socket" joints that allow for a wide range of motion, including a swiveling action, which is needed to allow for optimal hip function in all planes, even simple flexion and extension that the hips repeatedly move through while we're walking.

The problem is that many of us begin to lose this swivel action (internal and external rotation) as we age, and this loss in mobility is often accompanied by tightening of the ligamentous fascia that connects the lower lumbar region with our largest hip muscles.

Those who sit cross-legged as young children often do on classroom floors will maintain some degree of external rotation.  But there are few everyday positions and activities that encourage the hips to go through full internal rotation, and the same holds true for lengthening the fascia that ties the lower back in with the glutes. Thus, the 3 stretches shown in the video above.

Loss of mobility leads to premature wear and tear of the tissues that make up our joints, as well as reduced blood circulation and healing capacity of these tissues. This is a simple explanation for why loss of mobility eventually leads to significant joint pain that can lead to a need for joint replacement surgery.  

Even those who have had hip replacements put in will benefit from keeping their new joints mobile, as all weight-bearing joints throughout the body - from the toes and ankles all the way up to the upper cervical spine - behave as a kinetic chain in which the health of each section depends on the mobility of every other section.


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