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5 Thigh Stretches for Elevated Flexibility and Higher Mobility

Aggressive runners and Olympic weightlifters aren’t the one individuals who want thigh stretches. No, sofa potatoes want thigh stretches simply as a lot as their extra lively friends. The explanation? Sitting for prolonged durations locations the hip flexors in a shortened place, which results in ache and tightness within the higher thighs in addition to inactive glutes and overcompensating hamstrings.

So, whether or not you’re coaching on your subsequent marathon or clocking your fifth consecutive hour in entrance of the TV, you need to know how one can stretch your thighs. Use the next checklist of static and dynamic thigh stretches to stretch your inside thighs, hamstrings, quadriceps, and hip flexors.


1. Butt Kicks

A Butt Kick is a dynamic thigh stretch that targets the quadriceps, the muscle group positioned on the entrance of the thigh, and the hip flexors. When carried out shortly, butt kicks additionally improve your coronary heart price and heat up your physique’s tissues, priming you for a exercise.

“Butt kicks can typically irritate individuals’s knees, for the reason that transfer is hyperflexion accomplished at an accelerated tempo,” says Dr. Theresa Marko, PT, DPT, MS, OCS, board-certified orthopedic scientific specialist in bodily remedy and proprietor of Marko Bodily Remedy, PLLC, in New York Metropolis.

Should you really feel any knee ache whereas doing butt kicks, Marko suggests slowing down your tempo and lowering your vary of movement. (i.e., not kicking your butt).

  • Stand along with your toes hip-width aside.
  • Switch your weight to your left foot and, protecting your proper knee pointed down towards the bottom, shortly snap the best heel up and behind you in order that it faucets your butt.
  • Convey your proper heel down and hop onto your proper foot. Concurrently increase your left foot up and behind you in order that your left heel faucets your butt.
  • Proceed to hop from foot to foot, tapping your butt with alternating heels, till all reps are full.


2. Toy Soldier

Additionally, a dynamic thigh stretch, the toy soldier stretches the hamstring, the muscle discovered on the again of the thigh beneath the glutes. Marko notes that, if carried out too shortly, the toy soldier stretch may result in unintended pulling and straining of the muscle tissues.

“My recommendation is to ease into them and carry out them at a average tempo,” she says. “Don’t attempt to get your leg up as excessive as you presumably can!”

  • Stand along with your toes hip-width aside.
  • Retaining your again and knees straight, swing the best leg ahead and carry up till you are feeling a deep stretch at the back of the thighs. Maintain the best foot flexed.
  • Convey the best foot down, step ahead, and swing the left leg ahead and up. Once more, hold the knee straight and the foot flexed.
  • Proceed to stroll ahead like a toy soldier, swinging alternate legs, till all reps are full.


3. Facet Lunge

lower body workout - side lunge

“Facet lunges are a good way to stretch the inside thigh,” Marko says. Nonetheless, in the event you cope with knee ache or accidents, transfer slowly and proceed with warning, as this inside thigh stretch can put a variety of stress on the ligaments positioned on the inside portion of the knee.

  • Stand with the toes collectively.
  • Retaining the left foot planted, take a sizeable sideways step with the best foot.
  • Maintain your chest up as you bend your proper knee, hinge at your hips, and push your butt again. Maintain your proper knee stacked over your ankle and according to your second toe.
  • Decrease your hips till you are feeling a deep stretch within the inside left thigh.
  • Maintain for 30 seconds earlier than returning to a standing place.
  • Repeat on the alternative facet.


4. Crossed-Leg Ahead Bend

Along with stretching the hamstring, this thigh stretch additionally targets the highest of the iliotibial (IT) band.

  • Stand with the toes collectively and cross the best leg over the left (like an X).
  • Bend ahead on the waist, permitting your higher physique to hold. To extend the depth of the thigh stretch, seize maintain of your calves or ankles and pull your chest towards your legs.
  • Maintain the thigh stretch for 30 seconds and return to a standing place.
  • Cross the left leg over the best and repeat the thigh stretch.


5. Kneeling Lunge

kneeling lunge | thigh stretches

Marko loves the kneeling lunge thigh stretch for individuals with tight quadriceps and hip flexors, however it’s straightforward to do incorrectly.

“One enormous mistake everybody makes is that they arch their again. You actually have to be kneeling in a lunged place along with your knees at 90 levels, after which you should carry out a pelvic tilt and drop your tailbone down. This may pull on the hip flexor on the highest portion of the fibers,” Marko says. “In any other case, if you don’t do the pelvic tilt, all you might be actually doing is arching your again and compressing your lumbar backbone.”

  • Stand along with your toes hip-width aside.
  • Take a big step ahead along with your proper foot. Plant your proper foot and are available up on the ball of your left foot.
  • Decrease your left knee in order that it’s resting on the ground. (It’s possible you’ll need to place a mat or towel below your knee.) Each knees ought to kind proper angles.
  • Tip your pelvis ahead to tuck in your tailbone. Make certain the entrance knee is stacked immediately above your ankle and according to your second toe.
  • Should you’re ready, attain your left arm again and seize the highest of the left foot. Balancing on the left knee and the best foot, pull your left heel towards your butt. Should you’re unable to succeed in or maintain the left foot, merely maintain the kneeling lunge place.
  • Maintain for 30 seconds earlier than releasing the thigh stretch and repeating on the alternative facet.

It’s best to really feel this stretch on the entrance of your again thigh, which targets your psoas and quads.


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