Prone Hip Extension

By Denise Vidal

A few blogs ago we talked about the pelvic clock and the importance of pelvic stabilization. In this blog we are going to continue our work in the prone (lying on your abdomen) position while reviewing the pelvic stability exercise. By challenging our pelvic stability in the prone position, we can better access our posterior muscles, that is our spinal muscles, our gluteal muscles, and our hamstrings.

For this exercise, you can use the same pillow as you used for the prone breathing exercise, except this time lay with the pillow under your pelvis horizontally.

To start, observe your pelvic positioning. In previous blogs, we have discussed finding a “neutral pelvis”, that is the place where your “hip bones” are on the same plane as your pubic bone. As I have said before, depending on your individual structure this may not happen. If you feel like your forcing a position that is tense or uncomfortable, just focus on keeping the spine long and the pelvis stable.

Take a deep breath. When you exhale engage your abdominals by feeling your navel, your spine and the sides of your waist hugging the imaginary sphere in your pelvis. Keep this tone around your abdomen as you float your right leg off the floor. Think more about maintaining a neutral pelvis than about the height of the leg. The goal is not to lift the leg high, but to use the muscles in the back of the leg to lift the leg without destabilizing the pelvis. Try lifting each leg ten times while keeping your pelvis in neutral. You should feel the work in your core as well as the back of your leg.

Leave me a comment to let me know how it goes.

If you are experiencing any pelvic or back pain, you should consult with your physical therapist before attempting this exercise. In the meantime, work on the breathing exercises discussed in the previous blogs until your pain lessens.

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