Skip to content

Hip Hike Exercise - What It Is And How It Stabilizes The Back

The Hip Hike is an easy, yet incredibly effective exercise for activating quick lower back stability. The Hip Hike exercise promotes lower back stability quickly due to its dual activation of two crucial muscles in low back health - Quadratus Lumborum and Gluteus Medius. Read on to learn what the Hip Hike exercise is and why it rules!

hip hike exercise in action

Hip Hike Exercise - What Is It?

The Hip Hike exercise is a cross-functional movement targeting the Quadratus Lumborum (QL) and Gluteus Medius muscles. To perform the movement, stand with one leg on a surface at least 6 inches off the ground, and allow the other leg to hang in the air. The Hip Hike portion of this exercise is bringing the hip of the "dropped" leg up towards the ribcage on the same side - contracting the QL muscle. On the other side of the body, the Gluteus Medius muscle simultaneously fires to tilt the pelvis up. If this explanation made no sense, watch the video below:


Why The Hip Hike Exercise Rocks

The Hip Hike exercise is awesome for a few reasons, and if you're not sold yet here it is:

1. You Can Do It Anywhere - try to find a place you can't do the Hip Hike. You can do this on any elevated surface - on a stair, curb, bench, buddy - wherever you are the Hip Hike exercise is right with you.

2. Quick Fix - One effective set of the Hip Hike exercise is enough to bring activation and stability to the lower back. I recommend doing 2-3 sets, but after 1 set you should notice increased stiffness. Check out this post on a more complete back pain fix

3. QL + Gluteus Medius Engagement - These two muscles are huge in lower back health and strength, and both are activated in the Hip Hike exercise. In fact, the Hip Hike exercise is perhaps the easiest way to engage the QL and Gluteus Medius muscles together.



Thanks for reading about the Hip Hike exercise! Read Next: 


comment 4 comments

AMANDA calendar_today

Im wondering, when you do this exercise, do you keep your pelvis neutral?

Lori Williamson calendar_today

Absolutely life changing video for me! Thank you so much!!! This movement is EPIC!

Ben - Author calendar_today

@Eric the glute medius on your left side may be chronically tight if it feels tingly when rising up. I would try releasing it before hip hikes with massage and stretching techniques – I wrote another article on gluteus medius pain here:

Eric calendar_today

When I do the hip hike, my glute medius on my left side gets tingly when I rise up. What does that mean?

Leave a comment

Subscribe to our newsletter

Receive emails every few days with back pain relief tips, testimonials, and resources