Sitting all day long in the office or on the couch is probably some people’s definition of being relaxed, but do you know that such sedentary lifestyle can contribute to a myriad of health conditions in the long run?

Not only that, but the lack of physical activity can tighten the muscles on your hips, leaving you with pains and aches and affecting your mobility.

And it’s no coincidence that you opened this post because just like me, you’re also aiming to open and stretch your hip muscles. We may not have the same reason for it, but nonetheless, these yoga poses are sure to benefit you.

1. Garland Pose

The Mālāsana or garland pose is a term used to refer to different squatted yoga poses. This pose lengthens the spine, develops balance and flexibility, and stretches the back torso, groin, and ankle.

Here’s how:

  • Stand with your feet wider than the shoulders and your feet slightly pointed outwards.
  • Lower yourself into a squatting position. Bend your elbows to bring your hands to the level of the heart and with palms touching each other. Make sure the elbows touch the inside of your knees.
  • If you’re flexible enough, your feet should touch the mat completely.
  • Open your hips further by spreading your knees further apart using your elbows and hands.
  • Stay in the position for 30 seconds.

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2. Goddess Pose

A simple yet strong feminine pose, the goddess pose or Utkata Konasana is effective in strengthening the core, legs, and glutes, and opening the hips.

Here’s how:

  • Stand with your feet 3.5 to 4 feet apart and your hands at the heart, palms touching each other. If you want a more challenging pose, just raise your arms overhead.
  • Gently lower yourself down until your knees are at a 90-degree angle and your thighs are parallel to the floor.
  • To feel the pressure in your hips, tuck your tailbone and push it forward.
  • Stay in the position for 30 seconds.

3. Crescent Lunge

The crescent lunge is a standing yoga pose that engages the muscles of the entire body.

Anjaneyasana in Sanskrit, this pose strengthens both the upper and lower body, deeply stretches the hips, torso, arms, and legs, and improves your stability and balance.

Here’s how:

  • Start on a low lunge, then gently drop your back knee on the mat with your toes either lied flat on the mat or curled.
  • Place your hands on your front knee. Make sure that your front knee is at or close to a 90-degree angle.
  • Sink deeper to stretch the hips further. If you want more challenge, you can lift your arms toward the ceiling.
  • Stay in the position for 30 seconds.

4. Bound Angle Pose

Known as Baddha Koṇāsana in Sanskrit, the bound angle pose is a yoga pose that doesn’t only opens the hips but also effectively stretches the knee, thigh, and groin.

This pose should be avoided by ladies who are in their menstruation period.

Here’s how:

  • Sit on a mat with your knees bent and soles flat on each other.
  • Pull your heels toward the pelvis as close as you can. Place your hands on your feet.
  • Maintain a straight torso, then lean forward as you exhale. Push your knees toward the floor using your quadriceps.
  • Stay in the position for 30 seconds.

5. Lotus Pose

A seated hip-opener yoga pose that originated from early Indian meditative practice, the lotus pose or Padmasana gives the hips, knees, and ankles an excellent stretch.

Moreover, this pose strengthens the back and spine and increases blood circulation in the pelvis.

Here’s how:

  • Sit on a mat with your tailbone flat on the ground. Cross your legs in your front.
  • Using your hands, raise your left foot up so that it sits on your right thigh. Feel the pressure and tightness in your left knee, hip, and ankle.
  • Stay in the position for 30 seconds. Repeat the position on the other side. This is the half-lotus pose.
  • If you can easily and comfortably do the half-lotus pose, try the lotus position. From the half lotus pose, use your hands to lift your right foot and sit it on top of your left thigh. You should feel the pressure and tightness in both sides of your hips and legs.

6. Lizard Pose

The lizard pose or Utthan Pristhasana is a wonderful pose that targets cranky hips.

This exercise also strengthens and stretches the groin, hip flexors, and the inner hamstrings, increasing the flexibility of these muscles.

Here’s how:

  • Get down in a lunge position, and step your front foot forward to the outside. Place your hands on the inside of the front knee.
  • Take your back knee off the ground and bring your forearms down flat on the mat to stretch your hip deeper. You can curl the toes of your back foot and press up into its ball.
  • Keep your chest open and your chin lifted, maintaining a straight gaze.
  • Focus on your breathing. Stay in the position for 30 seconds.

7. Downward-facing Frog Pose

This simple yet powerful yoga pose excellently opens and stretches the hips, groin, and inner thighs. The downward-facing frog pose is particularly beneficial for athletes and runners and for those who are prone to hip tightness.

Here’s how:

  • Get down on the table pose — your hands and knees on the floor.
  • From there, walk your knees out as wide as you comfortably can. Point your toes to the sides so that your ankles are directly behind the knees.
  • Bend your elbows to bring the forearms and hands flat on the mat.
  • Focus on releasing and pressing your hips to the ground until you feel a deep stretch in your inner thighs and hips.
  • Stay in the position for 3 to 6 deep breaths. Push up through your arms to return to the starting position.

Our hip muscles significantly affect our mobility, so stretched and open hips mean great mobility. Plus, stretching the muscles of the hip is a great way to relieve lower back aches.

Do you feel a tightness in your hip muscles lately? You can try these amazing yoga poses and relieve yourself of cranky hips!