Think hip tightness is all down to squats and lunges? Think again! We hold emotions in our hips, which can make it super difficult to loosen up. Luckily Julie B is here to help us out, with five yoga poses for happy hips.
We hold a lot of tension in our hips and often neglect stretching them out. With the hips you need to spend time on them if you want to get into those tension hot spots. But did you know that a lot of the tension we feel is a result of our emotions and not dealing with whatever is going on in our life? Have you ever done a yoga class and felt emotional after it? Chances are you did a lot of hip work. So what are the yoga poses for happy hips?
I remember the first time this happened to me, the teacher held us in pigeon for 10minutes on each side and I couldn’t believe when I went into the pose on the second side and found tears streaming down my face. I was so shocked, I didn’t know what was wrong with me. The teacher quickly reassured me that it was just an emotional release. Although she seemed fine with it I felt embarrassed and, to be honest, confused. But I’ve come to learn that it’s ok to shed a few tears on the mat. If you need to release it then the worst thing you can do is fight it.
But before you start panicking, don’t worry! These happy hips tips are not a fast track to a meltdown. But they should help to release some of that stubborn tightness and tension and help to give you some space in those hips.
Babies do this pose with ease and giggle through it, however try to put an adult in this pose and it’s a different story. I often think Happy Baby, Unhappy Adult!
- Keep your head and shoulders on the mat
- Take the back of the thighs if the feet are a stretch too far
- Stay active in the legs: you are pulling your knees towards the floor and equally pushing your heels to the sky
Tiny adjustments make this pose a real firecracker for the hips, stay for 10 breaths each side.
- Take a wide stance. Try to get your hips in line with your front knee
- Look inside your front foot and make sure you can see your big toe. If not, open your knee wider without moving your foot
- Tuck your tailbone under. Hello hips!
Start by moving this one side to side and then hold on each side for 10 breaths.
- Keep your chest up and not facing the floor
- As you move from side to side keep checking on your bent knee and encourage it to open wider.
- Don’t worry about your heel of the bent leg being on the floor, this won’t stop you getting deep into the hips.
Anyone who knows me will know this is my nemesis pose, but it’s a great one to get deep into those hips. Try to stay in this for 3minutes
- Keep your hips and knees in line.
- Make sure your knees are bent so that your ankles are in line with your knees.
- Think about lengthening your torso by walking your fingers forward but keep those hips reaching back.
This is my love hate pose. It is amazing for releasing tension in the hips, but you need to make sure you set yourself up properly. The longer you stay in it the better. Try 3 minutes on each side. And if you can do
- Make sure your hips are level, use a block under your hips if you are off the mat.
- Don’t worry about the angle of your front shin, focus on the hips being level and not leaning over to one side.
- Again lengthen your torso, don’t round the spine to get down. It’s better to be on your forearms with a long spine than rounding down. Work within your own body.
Julie Burke is a yoga and wellness teacher and founder of Hotpod Yoga Dublin. Having trained all over the world and living abroad for 5 years she returned to Ireland in 2017 with a mission to enhance the wellness offering in Dublin through Hotpod Yoga. She opened her first studio in October 2017 with a second one on the way.
READ: How to master wild thing