5-Minute Yoga For Open Hips and Lower Back

This yoga to open hips and stretch the lower back is part of the Prime Women 30-Day Fitness Challenge. If you haven’t yet, get all the details and learn how you can participate! All you need is 5 minutes a day for 30 days to commit to a healthier you!


If you have tight hips this yoga sequence will help open them. It will also give your lower back a good stretch. Dallas based yogi Nicole Payseur will guide you through this short sequence that will offer relief and stretch you out. Because this sequence is just a few minutes long it is great for people who are seeking relief but don’t have a lot of time.

This sequence starts in a seated position and happens entirely on the floor. You may need a blanket to provide some extra support in the seated positions. When your hips are higher than the floor it gives the hips and groin a chance to relax.

Yoga for Open Hips

  1. Turn sideways onto the left hip. Hold the right knee. Swing the torso so the right knee is all the way forward.
  2. Lift the right leg up and if you can stack the right leg over the left. Ease sideways, placing the right elbow over the right knee then twist.
  3. Inhale launch up and raise hands toward the ceiling. Get tall.
  4. Exhale, the left hand goes to the outer right knee. Turn your left ribs forward and around. Then place the left elbow across right knee, twisting. Wind out.
  5. Right foot inching sideways, cross the legs so ankles are wide apart, soles of feet toward the ceiling. Reach arms up and on the exhale walk the hands forward. If this is too much use your blanket or sit cross-legged and lean forward.
  6. Release after several counts, and take your knuckles, drilling them into the arches of your feet. Massage the arches of the feet and pressure points there.
  7. Swing legs out and still bent, swing legs from left to right.
  8. Remove the blanket if using and swing to left hip, legs stacked and left leg on the floor, with knees bent. Grab the ankle and swing the top leg forward several times.
  9. Place legs so they’re stacked again and hang out in this position, swinging the neck, to open up the neck and ribs.
  10. Move onto the right hip and repeat steps 1-9 for the opposite side.
  11. Move onto your back with the knees still bent. Windshield wiper the knees from right to left.
  12. Let the knees fall to one side then pick up your ankle and place it on the opposite knee. Stretch the arm (on the same side of the body as the leg that is resting on top) above the head. Use the other hand to help stretch the arm.
  13. Release arm, and keeping ankle to knee bring both toward you, grabbing the foot to pull in closer. Take your hand and press the bent knee away from you. If you’re able, stretch the leg your ankle is on toward the ceiling, grabbing the toes and pulling them toward you.
  14. Release and go into happy baby pose. Let legs go to the side, knees toward you, grabbing a foot in each hand.
  15. Release and then repeat steps 11-14 for the opposite side.
  16. Ease out and bring knees together, hands on knees. Swing knees in a circular motion, reversing after a few cycles.
  17. Fold your knees to one side, then outreach arm and look to the opposite side. Repeat on the other side.
  18. Place soles of feet together, knees wide apart, arms outstretched. Stay here for ten deep breaths through the nose (or longer if you’d like). Close eyes and relax the face, the eyes, the space between the eyebrows.
  19. Ease the legs to straight, let the toes turn out at an angle. Windshield wiper the feet.
  20. Move the feet onto the floor and grab the back of the knees. using your core, slowly roll up and come back to sit.

What Causes Tight Hips?

Some of the causes of hip tightness include sitting for several hours a day like if you work in an office, stress from regular physical activity or sleeping on the side of the body all night long. It can also be caused by natural things, like if one leg is longer than the other or just the way you stand! If you tend to lean into one hip it could cause hip tightness.

yoga for open hips

How Do I Know If My Hips Are Tight?

You may feel tightness in your hips for many reasons. It comes from tension across the hip flexors, the muscles that connect the upper leg to the hip. You will often feel this tightness in the lower groin area or have lower back pain. Sometimes you may even experience hamstring strains associated with hip tightness. It can sometimes lead to issues in the lower back or knees. One way to determine if your hips are tight is through the Thomas Test.




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