Exercise Highlight 14: Half Kneeling Quadricep Hip Flexor Stretch
We have a sitting problem and the quadriceps and hip flexors don’t like it very much. They are positioned in a non functional static position for very long periods of time. Leading to tightness, weakness and length tension relationship issues. If you are an athlete and active, chances are that they are generally just tight as hell and lost some length along the way do to overuse and a misguided training program. This is where the stretch below can help keep your pelvic positioned properly, allowing you to extend through your hips better when you walk, run, squat, lift, and so forth.
If your part of the general population that works out a little bit or is a weekend warrior that sits for long periods of time most days of the week, then that tightness and lack of flexibility/mobility can also be do to a weakness within this area and the tightness that your feeling is the body trying to create stability to protect your joints for when you do move about. Therefore, this stretch will help some but in order for you to correct the compensation that is occurring, you will need to strengthen these areas with corrective exercise techniques and a little well intended strength training. Be sure to contact us to learn more.
I am just covering 2 basic examples but this can be a good start for many people. We would need to put the athlete (we are all athletes, you may just not feel like one right now) through a Functional Movement Screen and a few additional assessments to learn more about the person that we are working with in order to design the best training approach specific to the client.
In the mean time, give this stretch a try. It would be best to do some foam rolling / SMR of your quadriceps and hip flexor area, as well as a little work on your psoas muscle before hand. If you have time, a good way to work with this stretch and for best results would be to self massage the area, stretch actively and statically, then massage the area a little more and finish with some additional static stretching at the end of the day.
If your just getting started, begin with the 2 variations of the Half Kneeling Hip Flexor Stretch below. These are great to do statically and actively.
- Static Stretch - Hold each for 20-40 seconds with breaths, feeling a light stretch. This can be done multiple times a day, every day.
- Active Stretch - Complete 6-10 reps of 3-5 seconds for each with calm breaths, moving in and out in a smooth manner. This is great to do before a workout or when your day is done at the office and it is time to catch the train for you commute home.