Top 5 Hip Stretches (Internal Rotation)
Reminder- You can perform each stretch statically, dynamically, and isometrically. Variety is key in functional fitness, so make sure you employ a variety of different ways in which you hold and perform each stretch. Although these are some of the best internally rotated hip stretches available, there are many more that you should also employ. Static holds are best held for a minimum of 30 seconds, and remember to breathe and listen to your body first and foremost. Always consult a doctor before beginning any exercise program.
1. Warrior 1/Warrior 2 Hybrid (Virabhadrasana I/Virabhadrasana II)
Find yourself standing, then stagger the feet a few feet apart front to back, and a width that helps you find your balance. The front leg and foot can face straight ahead, with the front knee tracking directly towards the second toe in the front foot. The back leg can turn out at 45 to 90 degree angle, depending on where you are looking to get the stretch in the inner groin. You are focused entirely on the inner thigh stretch, so don't worry about what is happening with the upper body. Bend the front knee towards 90 degrees, and bend the back knee slightly until you feel a stretch in the inner groin of the back leg. Once you find the stretch, change the angle of the back foot and depth of the bend in each knee to explore different levels of stretch.
2. Half Heron Pose (Ardha Krounchasana)
Take a seat with both legs extended in front of you. Bend one leg at the knee and pull the foot of the bent leg back alongside the body. The foot can be pointed or dorsiflexed, and both should be practiced. If you need to elevate the hips because this causes discomfort on the knee of the bent leg, sit on a bolster, blanket, block or pillow. Once here, try to find comfort within the pose and explore moving the torso in different directions to achieve a stretch in the inner thigh.
3. Broken Leg Pose
For many practitioners, it will be essential to prop the hips up to avoid discomfort in the knee in this pose. So, if you need to sit on something, please do. From the half heron pose, pull the foot out away from the body so the shin of the bent leg is perpendicular to the straight extended leg and the knees are close to each other. As with the Half Heron Pose, move the torso in different ways to experience the variety of sensations this pose can provide.
4. Yogi Squats (Malasana Variant)
Come into a squat with the feet wide and turned out at a 45 degree angle away from the body. Make sure you get the glutes as close to the floor as possible and attempt to get the heels down to the mat. Once here, get comfortable and breathe, letting your body get used to being in the squat position, then as you feel ready, bend one knee towards the earth to the inside of the legs. You can stay here and hold, or switch side to side bending one knee in and then the other, moving at a pace that suits you. Make sure there is no discomfort in the knees or ankles while performing this yogi squat variant, and enjoy this challenging inner thigh stretch.
5. Heroes Pose/Frog Pose (Virasana/Mandukasana)
Sit on the shins and heels, thunderbolt pose, then take the feet and the knees wider than hips width distance apart and sit the glutes down between the soles of the feet. If it is too intense to get the glutes down to the earth between the feet then use a bolster, blanket, pillow or block to support the glutes. Once here, enjoy the lovely stretch in the shins, and thighs. For those who need more intensity, take the knees and feet even wider and fold the torso down towards the earth, getting a deep stretch in the inside of the thighs. Breathe and make sure to stay relaxed in these postures, coming out or backing off if there is any discomfort in the knees.
Hope you enjoy working on these hip stretches,