Tip: A Better Hip Flexor Stretch

Got tight hip flexors? Here's the stretch you've never tried before... but should.

Are your hip flexors having trouble reaching the necessary or optimal ranges of motion? Try this unique hip flexor stretch:

  1. Grab a long skinny superband and get in a half kneeling, 90/90 stance position.
  2. Loop the band around and knot it on the rear leg.
  3. Start in a proper rack position with the band held in the hand that's on the same side as the rear leg.
  4. From here rock your hips forward and press the band fully overhead until the elbow is fully extended and your upper arm is covering you ear.
  5. Hold the position isometrically for a few seconds and focus on contracting the glute on the same side as the stretched leg. Keep the lumbar spine in a neutral position.

Do 5-8 reps per side.

This exercise takes the classic half-kneeling hip flexor stretch and enhances it with the extra assistance of a band. Driving the same side (ipsilateral) arm upward not only lengthens the lat, which can contribute to hip flexor tightness, it also increases the lengthening of the anterior hip/hip flexors in the process.

Remember, the lats attach through the thoracolumbar fascia network and tie in with the lumbar erectors. This becomes relevant because, based on their respective attachments, both the lats and lumbar erectors – along with the near half-dozen or so hip flexors – rotate the pelvis in the same direction. That means when either of the muscle groups activate they feed activation of the other.

So by increasing the stretch in the lat at the shoulder you can in theory help tone down the hip flexors in the process!

Any injury or performance issue you're dealing with at the moment relating to the hip flexor muscle group will need to be corrected through proper strength and conditioning development.

Travis Hansen specializes in human-performance enhancement for athletes at all levels. He is also the leading authority on speed development for the International Sports Sciences Association (ISSA). Follow at www.resultsbyscience.com