Yoga for Tight Hips

The word is out: we’re hosting another yoga series. This time, it’s all about yoga for hips! Nickie Hebert has been hard at work designing a four-week program cleverly called, Hip Hip Hooray! I recently had the privilege of taking a peek at Nickie’s notes, and let me tell you- this is one you do not want to miss! From her background in ballet, to certified yoga teacher, Nickie’s knowledge of the hips goes beyond what you can cover in a Flow yoga class. Over the course of four weeks, she’ll be offering up a weekly series that will help you get to know this area of the body in new and fun ways, as well as sustain hip health for years to come. There will be yoga practices to both strengthen, open and stabilize the hips, as well as education around anatomy, common hip issues, and more!

Every Tuesday night from February 12th-March 5th 6:00-7:15PM, join Nickie at the Soul Strong Yoga Sanctuary. In Nickie’s words: “Whether you have happy hips or cranky hips, this workshop will be interactive and help you better understand this complex and important part of your body.”  Don’t forget to sign up HERE to reserve your spot. The class is capped at 10 students. If you’re wanting to learn more, check out the interview below to learn more about Nickie and the upcoming series.

What are some of the benefits of strengthening the hips? And opening the hips?

Nickie: Strong hips are important for active people, athletes, and non-athletes alike. Studies have shown links between weak hip muscles and injuries. Your hips are used everyday and every day we do things that both weaken and shorten (or tighten) them. Strong hips have several benefits that include combating bad posture, creating muscle balance, increasing performance, and helping with stability. All of which are crucial in avoiding injuries and important for proper alignment.

For a lot of us, our hips tend to be tight (for various reasons). Opening your hips have many benefits that include reducing that overuse and tension in your spine (decreased back pain - yay!), releasing stress, improved range of motion, and better circulation. Having more flexible hips can also create an energetic shift or release (bring on the tears in Pigeon!).  As you become more flexible, it becomes even more important to create strength in the hip muscles to help stabilize that mobility.

As with everything, moderation is key. We need to create a balance between strength and flexibility.

What inspired you to teach a series all around the hips?

Nickie: I originally wanted to create something inspired by ballet (I danced ballet for 15+ years). As I thought about it more though, a series associated with ballet may have been intimidating to some or wouldn't have created enough interest, since it's such a specific niche. I began to think about what else could be helpful and accessible to the general population. I don't usually ask students what they want to work on in my classes but when I do, the hips were something that a lot of people would request. Due to dancing, I've been fortunate to not struggle with hip issues (besides sometimes being little tight on my left side) and have always loved poses associated with that part of my body.

What are some of the most common habits you see in yoga classes due to a lack of awareness in the hips?

Nickie: The most common habits that I see in yoga classes is that one hip always like to jet out to the side, because it feels better - and who doesn't want to feel good? It happens a lot it in poses like Warrior III, Pigeon, and Pyramid. It may feel good but without stabilizing and leveling out your hips, overtime, alignment problems can occur. Uneven pressure and misaligned hips can cause your spine (and other parts of your body) to work harder than they need to. Having proper alignment in your hips will help you get the full benefit of the pose, while reducing injury risk, and it will help keep your body healthy (so you can keep doing yoga for many years.)

What can folks expect to walk away with having taken this series?

Nickie: Students will be provided with a booklet that has a breakdown of the series. It will include the class sequence that we do that week, a short excerpt about your hips (anatomy, common misconceptions about your hips, etc.), and a breakdown of the poses. There will be space in the booklet to take notes and it'll be the students’ to take home. The practice of yoga doesn't stop once you walk out of the studio. I want students to reference their booklet, so they can strengthen, stabilize, and stretch out their hips at home, at work, or wherever!

What is one quick hip health tip you can tell us?

Nickie: Listen to your body! If you take a breath and listen, your body will tell you what it needs.


All this info have you shouting “Hip Hip Hooray”? Check out the links below (full of hip stretches!) to continue your super hip education. And don’t forget to sign upHERE! Price: $100

https://www.yogajournal.com/poses/types/hip-openers

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ho9em79_0qg

https://www.yogiapproved.com/yoga-poses-2/hip-stretches-tight-hips/

https://www.self.com/gallery/hip-stretches-your-body-really-needs-slideshow

https://yurielkaim.com/yoga-hip-openers/