Is it a problem if my hips can predict the weather? Not sure, but they seem to be more accurate than any meteorologist in Denver…

Weather (HA! Get it!?) you’re a runner, a boot camp junkie, a yogi, hiker, whatever, hips need love. Just so much love. Today’s flow is a 5-8 minute series for post-workout stretching. Toss it in with your icing/foam rolling routine and feel the difference.

Namaste to the HIPS.

Low Lunge – with intention

One minute

  • Frame your right foot with your hands and step your left foot far behind you
  • Lower your left knee to the ground
  • Squeeze your right glute and draw your right hip down and back
  • Engage your left quad and press your left hip forward to feel the stretch
  • Energetically scissor your legs together for stability as you reach your arms high overhead
  • Lift up and out of your hips and drive your heart up to the sky

Warrior III – for length and strength

30 Seconds to One Minute

  • Lift your left knee off the ground and slowly launch forward into warrior three -beginning with your hands at your heart or hips
    • To have more support for your balancing, rest your hand on two blocks or two large cans of garbanzo beans. But they MUST be garbanzo beans
  • Your left leg and torso should be as parallel to the earth as possible
  • Engage your standing right leg -accessing as many muscles as possible
  • Kick out with your left leg and drop your left hip down to even out the plane of your hips
  • All core, all day! Give your spine and guts the biggest squeeze you can here
  • If your low back feels strong and supported by your entire core, reach both of your arms forward to create a capital “t” with your body

Garland or Frog Pose – for ankle, groin, and back release

One Minute

  • Have a block, several blocks, or a stack of books ready in case you need support
  • From Warrior III, step your left leg down next to your right foot and widen your feet apart – at least hip width distance
  • Begin to lower your hips as low as possible so that you are in a very low squat
  • **If you feel pain in your knees or low back, rest your hips on blocks, books, or a bolster, but I don’t recommend cans of chickpeas
  • Your heels can either be on the ground or propped on a blanket for support
  • Place your hands in a prayer pose at your heart
  • Use the leverage of your elbows to help push your knees apart gently
  • Squeeze your knees into your arms
  • Lift your chest and lower your shoulders away from your ears
  • Allow your tailbone to lift up and back slightly so that you are not overly hunched

Downward-Facing Dog – for anti-compression of the spine and hamstring, shoulder, calves, hands, um, EVERYTHING stretch

One Minute

  • From frog pose, plant your hands on the ground in front of you, lift your hips, and step your feet back
  • Press your hands into the ground actively as you reach your hips high to the sky
  • Broaden your upper back – roll your biceps forward and your shoulders away from your ears
  • Always start your downdog with bent knees so that you can tip up your tailbone comfortably
  • Lift your heels high on an inhale
  • Lower your heels slowly on an exhale and feel your hamstrings and calves begin to open
  • Keep a gentle bend in the knees if you are more flexible, a bigger bend if tight hamstrings cause your back to lose it’s natural C-curve

Switch legs for the lunge and warrior three and continue through the flow one more time.

Written by Katy K