Tight Hip Flexors? Try one of these stretch variations

Tight Hip Flexors are a common problem many of us can relate to. This tightness can often lead to lower back discomfort and running complaints.  We find this often in today's population due to the high number of desk jobs out there.  Our hip flexors work to bend the hips and raise our knees up towards the chest.  

 No Tight Hip Flexors Here!

No Tight Hip Flexors Here!

Psoas Major & Iliacus combine to be named illiopsoas and are the muscles we refer to as our hip flexors.  They attach to the front of our lumbar (lower) spine & illiac crest (top of pelvis) and insert into the top of our femur (thigh bone).  Tight hip flexors tend to alter our posture and affect our biomechanics which can lead to the mentioned lower back pain and running complaints.

Sitting for prolonged periods places these muscles in a shortened state and they tend to adopt this position.  Stretching can help to combat this.  Here are a few variations to try.

 

Lying on your back with the affected leg hanging off the side, pull your opposite knee towards your chest. Let your leg hang down with gravity. Pull your knee higher to add more stretch
Stand with one leg on a bed/chair/block roughly 50-80cm high. Stand up tall while lunging forward onto your upper leg and extending your hip on the lower leg.
On your hands and knees place one foot against a wall with your knee bent up. Push up into a kneeling position, focusing on tall posture and driving your hip forwards. To make the stretch stronger keep your knee closer to the wall.

 

After stretching it is always an aim to gain muscular control in the new found range.  This however is a conversation for another day.

The Gap Physio