Hip Flexor Muscles
QL Claw Targets:
The 5 major hip flexors (Left to Right): Rectus Femoris, Sartorius, Tensor Fascia Latae (TFL + IT Band), Iliacus, and Psoas. The function of the hip flexors is to bring the leg forward and up - think kicking something directly in front of you with your toe, or bringing your knee to your chest while marching. Sitting all day causes the hip flexors to shorten. When the hip flexor muscles are short or hyperactive, they can tilt the pelvis forward - causing core and glute muscles to compensate and give the low back a bad time.
Releasing the hip flexor muscles is step 1 to health hips and low back, but stretching and strengthening this muscle group is just as important. Odds are if you sit for over 8 hours a day (most people do), and do not sprint or stretch your hip flexors, they are tight. Try these two stretches for 2 minutes per side daily until you feel the awakening:
- Couch Stretch
- Spiderman Stretch
The hip flexors are strengthened naturally through running, especially in sprinting. Once the hip flexors are loose and cease causing pain, strengthen them with these two exercises:
- Standing Knee to Chest