Yoga Therapy for the Hips

Erica Fritch
Instructor Erica Fritch
Average: 4 (72 votes)
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This short therapeutic sequence isolates the outer hips, hip flexors and quadriceps to improve their flexibility and help counteract the effects of chronic sitting. With regular use, musicians, office workers, dentists and dental hygienists will find ease in their body at work and at home. Yoga practitioners will also find that these exercises will quickly improve their flexibility in their asana practice.

Equipment: None
Style: Hatha Yoga, Yoga Therapy, Yoga for Back Care


AmandaMitnick 5 years ago

I love this class! Perfect for getting some movement into my aggravatingly tight hips!

Erica Fritch 5 years ago

Hi Amanda,
I'm glad this class hits the spot for you. It's one of my favourite sets of excersizes to do, and I have not been doing it very often lately. I'll take a note from you and get my chair back out!

Lolala 6 years ago

My hips are so closed that I can't get my shin anywhere near the chair in the final pose. Can you suggest any modifications to the Pigeon pose so that I can start getting the benefits of the stretch?


Erica Fritch 6 years ago

Hi Lolala,
oh, I can relate to closed hips. Pigeon pose has dozens of modifications you can use - I have a section in my yoga therapy training on this specific question!
The good old reliable variation is to come onto your back and do a Figure Four stretch, keeping your foot flexed. You can keep your other foot on the ground until you are ready to interlace your fingers behind your thigh and bring both legs toward your chest.
You can do the same thing we do in this video, but on a desk or table instead of a chair - this takes the intensity out of the back leg, especially, and allows for a more gradual ease into the pose. As you open up, you can step your standing leg back, a little at a time, and eventually start to bend that knee. You will work your way into being able to use the chair as in the video.
And, you can always sit on your chair and bring you leg into the same Figure Four position as on your back. With your foot flexed, you can gently press your knee down toward the floor. THis is a great way to do it, as it building in the stability of having square hips, since neither of them will lower away from a square position.

I hope that helps! Keep practicing. Those hips will open up for you soon.

boichot1956 6 years ago

I have used up the maximum internet speed for the month and they slowed down the internet speed. What would help me to be able to watch the videos? I am not using HD right now I have it where I could maybe watch the video. What can I do to solve this problem?

boichot1956 6 years ago

Last year I was recouperating from a fracture in my Femoral neck really close to my hips. I did not know I had a fracture when I injured myself at the motorcycle course that I was taking. I had fallen three times with a motorcycle I fell on my left side and I suffered what I thought was a sprained big toe, sprained ankle, and a bruised hip. I could not have everything checked out because I did not have insurance yet. This happened in June of 2012. I found out I had a fracture on January 06, 2013. All through the summer I was in a whole lot of pain. I still had to climb up steps everyday, I still was dancing at Jazz Fests, and other events, and also going to school. I still did this with a lot of pain. It hurt so bad that at times I could barely walk, but I did that also and did not quit. When it healed, I began to try to strengthen the inner and outer thighs, ride my brand new bike because the mountain bike was to heavy for me. I started looking for free yoga classes and I found your site. I found exactly what I needed to gently get my upper thigh and hip joints more flexible and eventually I can stop having to take Aleeve everyday. Maybe I will be able to stop taking pain relievers permenetely.
The Yoga Therapy for the Hips definitely worked on the areas that needed to be worked on. My leg is getting better.

govinda 6 years ago

Wow - your body has been through a lot! I'm so glad you are on your way to recovery and that these exercises can play a part in that rehabilitation. Best of luck to your on your journey back to standing on your legs painfree!

Suzzann 7 years ago

This video would be a quick, yet excellent way to stretch and release all those muscles after being cooped up in a long car ride. Great for use after the drive visiting distant family.

govinda 6 years ago

oh, yes, this is a perfect antidote to restless-car-leg syndrome. I get that from even short car rides!
Glad you found it useful.