Effective releases for the tightest hips

Hips can be an area of extreme tightness in the body making many yogic hip openers a challenge.

The structure of your hips helps to support and stabilise your body weight, connecting your torso to your legs. Your hips are composed of these main components: the inner hips, the hip flexors and the outer hips.

Essentially, your hip flexors draw your legs toward your body. Your inner hips are there to draw your legs toward each other as well as stabilising your thigh bone in your hip socket. The function of your outer hips is to draw your legs apart as well as providing further stabilisation of the thigh bone in your hip socket.

We’ve put together these three exercises, suitable for every body, to help you release through the hips and provide relief from tightness.

Low Lunge

So simple but so effective. Low Lunges target the psoas and iliacus muscles to help increase both flexibility and length.

Start from your down-dog, then step your right foot between your hands. Stack your right knee over the ankle and lower your body, taking the left knee to the floor. Reach arms overhead or keep them resting on the hips.

Repeat on left side.

Reclining Bound Angle Pose

This one is utter bliss, with variations for tighter hips there is a sweet spot for everyone.

Start lying on your back, knees to the ceiling, feet flat to the floor. Place soles of the feel together and let knees fall open to the side. Maintain some support under the thighs if uncomfortable – use blocks or cushions to rest on. For an even more indulgent stretch, place a bolster under the length of the spine to help open through the chest.

Reclining Pigeon Pose

Pigeon Pose is a popular hip opener though it can stress the knees. This variation is safe for knees and accessible for everyone.

Start lying on your back and place the left ankle on the right knee. Then using your hands, draw the right knee toward the chest. Breathe, release then repeat on the other side.

Keeping up regular releases will help to build flexibility and range of movement through the hips.