Fitness

A Proposal for Open Hips

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Conveniently dubbed the “proposal” stretch, this movement is sure to help you balance out our chronically tight psoas major muscle (hip flexor), and get you on your way to better movement, circulation, spine health, and even digestion and sleep!

As riders we spend a lot of time with our hips flexed, doing mini squats in the tack. Which means we are prone to chronically tight hip flexors.

Why is this a bad thing? Not only do the hips flexors (psoas major and rectus femoris) attach to the lower spine and front of the pelvis, they also affect how we move. If they are tight they are pulling the pelvis forward and the spine forward. Creating a mechanically deficient posture, and enabling compensations in our movements. Signs of this can be low back pain, hip pain, knee pain, and even foot pain. Additionally, if these muscles are tight they can affect our digestive system and overall circulation.

So. A stretch for those beasts. In the “proposal” position as shown above, pushing the pelvis forward with the glute muscles until there is a stretch in the front of the hip and thigh. Then, rock in and out of that stretch.. Pushing farther into each time.

Do this for 3 sets of 10 pre and post ride for a lovely feeling of freedom in your hips. This will help improve your spine posture and make your ride much more bio mechanically friendly! If you spend long hours in the seated position outside of the tack, be sure to add this in through your day as well for a happier body!

Kathlyn Hossack

A long time equestrian, holder of a BSc. in Kinesiology, a certified strength and conditioning specialist, I specialise in helping riders (and all sorts of athletes) understand their bodies and improve their movement potential.

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