Hip Openers: The next level

Let’s get mobile

Building on from our previous hip openers, here is a set of five that you can add to your program or mobility session to ease those tight hips and improve your stability.

I use these movements all the time and my clients will recognise them and the special Grace Brown Fitness names that we’ve coined for some of them.

These movements are favourites from my experiences from yoga, various courses, athletics training, what I’ve learned from other athletes and trainers and lots more. They have been put together over many years of coaching people who sit down or compete in sports - basically everyone and anyone can benefit.

Give them a go yourself and let me know what you think!

  1. Hip Flexor Stretch with Pelvic Tilt

How to: One foot flat on the floor, one knee on the floor, hands on hips for stability, neutral spine, nice and straight.

Make sure the hip is above the knee that is on the floor and the other one is aligned with ankle.

Rather than driving the knee forward it’s about the pelvic tilt. It’s a small movement but can be an intense stretch.

Keep your shoulder blades squeezed together and your core engaged to help you stay nice and straight and stable.

Build: reach forward and straighten your arm to deepen the stretch and warm up the abs too!

Reps: 5 reps on each side

2. Windscreen Wipers

How to: Sit on the floor and fan your legs and feet out, both legs at 90 degree angles. Keep your feet on the floor and rotate from side to side, like a windscreen wiper.

Start with your hands on the floor, slightly behind you. If that is too easy, put your hands together in front of you. You want to get to the point where your internal knee reaches the floor on each rotation.

Reps: 5 reps each way with hands on the floor, 5 without.

3. Waves

How to: Keep you legs in the same position as the windscreen wipers. Start with your hands between your foot and your knee, leaning forward. Roll your spine, leading with your chest, into an upwards position and back.

Do 3 reps of that then move your hands either side of the knee, 3 reps, then move your hands to behind your knee. Once you’ve done that side, repeat the same on the other side.

This is great for your torso, spine, hips, glutes and adductors. It will hit anywhere that you have tightness.

Reps: 3 sets in three positions on each side.

4. Power Hip Thrust

How to: Building again from the waves and wipers, legs in the same start position. Thrust your hips up from there and press up, squeezing your glutes, to a kneel and then back down.

It’s a great dynamic warm up and mobility movement. It gets a bit deeper into your hips and glutes.

5. Dynamic Sit in the Squat with transfer

How to: Get into the squat position and sit in it with your whole weight down and your heels down.

Put your finger tips on the floor for a little stability then just rotate your hips to transfer your weight from one foot to the other, rotating from heel to toe as you go.

This is great for hip mobility and also your ankles which can be the secret cause of all sorts of niggles.