Holiday Hips

by Katherine Ehrlichman

Guest Blog Written by Curtis Hall, Kitsbow Ambassador & Head Coach at Bare Fit Adventure Training

Nothing makes me want to get out and ride like being stuck in the car for hours, unfortunately those same conditions make for cranky hips and lower back. Since surely I’m not alone in this, below are my 3 favorite movements to get my hips & spine trail ready for some fun after lengthy holiday travels. These moments will not only increase your riding performance, they with reduce chances of injury and speed post ride recovery.

This is hands down my favorite hip mobility movement. Opt for sitting like this instead of criss cross style to stretch your hip flexors, glutes and lower back, some of the most important riding muscle groups. The closer to 90 degrees your knees are, the more intense this stretch is. To add dynamic mobility to this otherwise static stretch, keep your feet & butt planted while moving your knees in a windshield wiper motion. Feel free to lean back on your hands to adjust intensity if needed.

 

Do these before, after or even mid ride to relieve spinal tension, invigorate your lungs and get your hips, spine & shoulders all working together. Start on your hands & knees with a neutral spine. Take a deep breath while pressing your core to the ground & looking up at the ceiling. Then as you exhale, arch your back as high as possible while letting your neck relax. Inhale down and exhale up, connecting your breath & movement while keeping your hands & knees rooted in the ground. 

 

While cat/cow is focused on flexion and extension, the Scorpion Stretch is all about rotation. It’s truly a full body movement that stretches your hip flexors, quads, & abdominals, activates your glutes, and opens your chest. Start by laying prone & placing your hands in a goalpost position. While pressing into the ground with one arm, reach with the opposite leg across your body in an arcing motion and hold for at least a breath. Repeat on the other side.