Most of us feel our muscles tightening as we get older. This is a common thing in your hips. People who spend most of their time sitting at a desk or in a car may have even noticed a decrease in their range of motion. There are some yoga poses that are easy to do and only take 10 minutes out of your day at least six days a week. These poses that are learned through yoga teacher training will help stretch and release all the tension that builds up in your hips. You may be feeling a dull ache in your muscles when you stretch but this is normal because your muscles are used to stretching farther than usual.
Beginning this pose you should lunge forward with your left leg until your right knee can touch the floor. While in this position, the sole of your left foot should be flat on the floor while your toes on your right foot should support your right leg. Place your hands on the floor on the inside of your left leg. You can relax your arms, back, legs, head, and neck and maintain this position for up to three minutes. Pay attention so that you do not strain your breathing and make sure you are breathing normally and are comfortable. Yoga teachers will suggest that you repeat these steps with the other side. As you start to feel more comfortable with practicing the lunge, you can place both of your arms onto the floor until your elbows are touching the floor to make a more intense stretch.
Eye of the Needle
To practice this pose you should begin lying on your back with your knees bent and your feet both flat on the floor. You can cross your left ankle over your right knee and lace your fingers beneath your right thigh. Slowly lift your right leg off the floor and stay in this position for at least three minutes. Make sure that your back is flat and your head can be resting on the floor. If you feel any pressure in your neck or the upper back you can use a yoga prop such as a towel or small pillow to put under your neck for additional support. Make sure to repeat this on the other side.
Legs up the Wall
Practicing this pose is great for beginners because it is easy to do. Place a rolled up towel or small pillow beneath your lower back and lift both of your legs off the ground and rest them against a wall. Make sure to keep both of your legs straight so they are almost flat against the wall. Yoga teachers will tell you at this point it should look like you are sitting on the wall with your back on the floor. Slowly lift your arms back so that they are resting on both sides of your head. Hold this pose for at least three minutes.
The pose known as the cobbler is great for stretching out the groin, hips and inner thighs. You can begin by sitting on the floor with your knees out to the sides and the soles of your feet together. Slowly bend forward and walk your hands out to increase the stretch. Yoga teacher training says this is a great pose for stretching if you are a cyclist and ride in a bent over position for your road bike.
During this pose you will attempt to line your knees up, one on top of the other, while you are sitting between your feet. Begin this pose with both legs straight out in front of you. Slowly bend your left leg so the knee is pointing straight and the out thigh is on the floor. Cross your right leg on top and try to line up your knees. You will want to have your feet wide enough apart to sit. Put your hands on the floor in front of you and if you can walk them forward to an extra stretch. Hold the pose for up to two minutes on each side.
Reclining Pigeon Pose
Reclining Pigeon Pose starts on your back with your knees bent and your feet on the floor. Cross your right ankle over your left thigh and reach behind your left thigh using both hand and pull gently in toward you. You will create a stretch in your right hip and low back. Practice this pose for one minute on each side.
This pose starts with standing with your feet wider apart than your hips. You should bend your knees and descend slowly only going as low that is comfortable. You can also use a rolled up blanket and put it under your heels if they don’t touch the floor. Yoga teachers will make a point in saying that none of these poses should cause harm; they should only be providing a healthy stretch.
Yoga teacher training gives you the tools to be health. Being able to learn a couple yoga poses and practice those on a routine schedule will go a long way toward restoring your flexibility in your hips.