Tight hips are common in riders, but most of the population alike, sitting in the chair, the car, whilst studying, blog writing etc and for us equestrian folk we adopt that same position for the most part whilst mounted upon our steed!
Tight hips can cause hip pain, lower back pain, create a lack of fluid movement whilst in the saddle, along with crookedness to boot.
It might be tight, it could be weak, to be honest it is likely both. So, yes we incorporate some mobility, but I would also gently nudge (i,e, kick) you to consider some strength training. You need to be strong for appropriate alignment within your body with suppleness to absorb the horses movement.
A strong and functional lower body programme targeting increased strength of the quadriceps, hamstrings, hip flexors and not forgetting the glutes lend to a balanced leg; both in, and out of the saddle.
Single leg exercises are a favourite of mine as they are great at improving symmetry; asymmetry in both strength and flexibility is a common overuse occurrence in riders and is proven by my own research and others to develop with increased duration on the horse – so yes, you need to correct this off the horse (please and thank-you!).
Exercises such as the following may be an option to you, a good coach will be able to programme these exercises into a functional and well balanced regime for you:
- SINGLE LEG DEADLIFTS
- GLUTE BRIDGES
- CRAB WALKS
- ISOMETRIC SQUATS (SINGLE LEG)
- STEP UPS
- SIDE LYING LEG LIFTS
- SINGLE LEG SQUATS
Of course, there are so many these are just some ideas for you!
Specific hip mobility is also great and targeted self myofascial release:
Mobility and self massage video:
So I hope that this helps with some ideas for you to incorporate as I get endless questions about hips, strengthen and stretch – together, consistently. One pigeon pose is NOT going to cure you, lol.
If you are looking for something more specific and are interested in training with me personally, please fill in the client form below and I will be in touch to arrange a call and see if online coaching will work for you.
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