Yoga is filled with hip openers, that have a multitude of benefits beyond general flexibility.
Did you know that hip opening poses offer an effective form of stress management?
When we are stressed we tend to carry that tension in our hips and pelvis, so by performing hip openers we allow our bodies to release and let go.
I know I’ve been particularly stressed lately, dealing with redundancy, job interviews and juggling finances so will definitely be trying this yoga sequence out later!
Here are 6 poses recommended in this months Om Yoga Magazine:
|6 Hip Opening Yoga Poses|
6 Hip Opening Yoga Poses
1. Three Legged Dog
Start in downward facing dog. Looking between your hands and keeping your left foot grounded, kick your right leg back and stack your right hip on top of your left hip. Bend your right knee. Keep your shoulders square and press the ground away as you lift your pelvis. Breathe for 5 deep breaths.
2. Lunge Pose
From three-legged dog, swing your right leg through between your hands. Make sure your left heel is actively pushing away from you. Root your right foot and don’t allow your right knee to go forward beyond your left ankle. Square your hips and keep your chest lifted. Breathe deeply for 10 breaths. For a deeper stretch, bring your back knee onto the ground, keep your hips square and lift your arms straight into the air.
From lunge, bring both arms onto the ground inside your inner right thigh. Drive your left heel back, keep your hips squared and breath for 10 breaths. For a deeper stretch, slowly come down onto your forearms. Keep your left thigh engaged and your gaze in front of you.
4. Pigeon Pose
Bring your right knee to the front of the mat, and if your hips are open enough, the right shin parallel to the top edge of your mat. Keep the outer edge of your right thigh grounded on the mat. Allow your left leg to stretch behind you with the top of your left thigh pushing down towards the ground. Square your hips and keep your chest lifted. Breathe for 10 breaths.
5. Front Splits
From pigeon, begin to straighten your leading leg. If you need to create space to do this, push up off the ground with your hands. Keep the back leg rooted towards the ground and slide your front leg forward as far as you can. Do not be discouraged if your hips do not reach the ground. Use a thickly folded towel or blanket to support you underneath your pelvis if needed. Keep shoulders over the hips, and the hips square. Keep the chest lifted and breathe deeply for 5 breaths.
6. Seated Forward Bend
Slowly come out of the splits and bring both legs forward. Reach up towards the sky with both arms, come forward from your hip joints and reach as far as you can for your calves, ankles or outer edges of your feet. First your belly touches your thighs, then your chest, then if you can release your forehead down onto your legs. Stay in this pose for a couple of breaths and then repeat the sequence on the opposite side.
Do you tend to store tension in one particular part of your body? Often people end up with tight shoulders and neck too, due to constantly being tense and stressed.