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Mobility is Magic!

We are all aware of our current lifestyle trends and movement patterns (or lack thereof!) so I am not going to dwell too much on that for now. I have always been a big proponent of exercises as it has a profound effect on our daily lives. And not just from a physical aspect but from an emotional aspect as well. However, one aspect of the movement/exercise model that I have never really "bought" into on a regular is stretching... Until recently! In an effort to expand my knowledge, I came across a series of basic exercises that re-framed the word stretch for me... and that is mobility! The more mobile we are, the greater the potential is for us to be able to carry out the most basic of functions on a daily basis. Our bodies are incredible adaptation machines and will compensate where needed. So if certain parts of our bodies do not move correctly, it will ensure that another part moves more to compensate for that loss. That could spell disaster for us as it overloads these areas and they may eventually "breakdown". One area of the body that is often neglected from a mobility aspect are the hips. If the hips are not free to move correctly, it may put additional strain on the lower back... and we end up with low back pain! Below, I have put together some basic movements that will assist with increasing hip mobility and relieve some of that low back discomfort.

90/90 Stretch

  • For this stretch, sit on the floor with the legs in a 90/90 position (see image below).

  • Your hand can be used to stabilise and support your upper body but make sure that the fingers point backwards to "lock" the elbow out (ensure that it is close to your body).

  • Keep your back straight and then push the knee and ankle of the leading leg into the floor.

  • At this stage, you may already feel the stretch in the hips. If so, then just hold it in this position, but if you still feel you can get more out of it, then lean forward towards your knee but at the same time keeping the low back straight.

Hold the pose for 5 seconds and repeat 10 times.

Pigeon Pose (Half)

This stretch is one of the yoga poses but can be added as a single element in your stretch routine.

  • Again, get on the floor with the leading leg bent (not quite 90 degrees) and the trailing leg straight out (as much as possible) behind you.

  • Place your hands on either side of the leading leg (for stability) and keep your back straight.

  • Now lean forward while at the same time pushing the knee and ankle of the leading leg into the ground

Hold the pose for 5 seconds and repeat 10 times.

If any of these stretches cause more pain (more than usual or the pain changes), please stop the exercise! Otherwise, happy stretching!! The Chiro4life team

Hold the position for 5 seconds at a time. Repeat 10 times.

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