Pigeon Pose Isn’t the Only Move That Will Loosen Your Hips

Photo: Stocksy/ Suprijono Suharjoto
Comprised of an array of muscles (shoutout powerful glutes and mighty adductors), the hips reign over most of our movement patterns. And yet, Americans sit an average of 13 hours a day (#desklife), which forces the hip flexors into a "shortened" position and ultimately leads to tight adductors, abductors, and hamstrings. Research also suggests that when the hip muscles tighten, a chain reaction occurs and the surrounding muscles are affected— especially the glutes

To counteract the sit-all-day lifestyle, it's smart to dedicate a decent amount of time to stretching before a sweat-sesh and TBH, whenever else there's time—like after the shower or when the vegan pumpkin mac & cheese is in the oven. While pigeon pose may be the go-to hip-openerit isn't the *only* move that will loosen your hips.

In fact, dance sculpt instructor, Megan Roup, who happens to be leading our next Well+Good Retreat in Miami this December, actually prefers an active hip-opening stretch which is humorously known as the "fire hydrant" (because it looks like a pup taking a pee on a fire hydrant).

To try it, start in tabletop position with your hands and knees on the floor, shoulders stacked over your wrists and hips stacked over hips. Keeping your spine neutral and core engaged, lift your right leg to the right as high as you can, then lower it back down with control. The goal is to get your leg to hip height, but no matter how high you can reach your leg, it's still a good stretch. That's one rep.

"I recommend doing 20 to 25 reps on one side before switching to the other side, but if you're doing it right you're really going to be engaging your core," Roup says. So if you notice your back and stomach sagging to the ground, stop, rest, and then switch sides.

To make the move harder, you can add a mini band around your thighs, which will add resistance. Or try resting on your forearms, which'll burn your glutes faster than you can say "fire hydrant".

To get more stretching (and workout) intel from Megan Roup in person at our Well+Good Retreat in Miami, email experiences@www.wellandgood.com to book your spot.

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