6 Effective Iliopsoas Stretches for Good Posture

Regular iliopsoas stretches can improve your strength and mobility. (Photo by Elina Fairytale via pexels)
Regular iliopsoas stretches can improve your strength and mobility. (Photo by Elina Fairytale via pexels)

The iliopsoas muscles are mainly responsible for externally rotating as well as flexing the thighs at the hip joint. The muscle resides in the pelvic region and connects the lower back to your upper thigh. The iliopsoas muscles also allow for different body functions and help maintain a good posture.

As iliopsoas muscles are present in the hip area, they are also responsible for many body ailments, including almost every type of pain that occurs in the body, including back pain, leg pain and hip pain. So it's crucial to make sure to keep your iliopsoas muscles healthy and stretch them regularly.

To prevent pain and help maintain a good posture, here are a few effective iliopsoas stretches you can do:


1) Runners stretch

How to do the runners stretch?

  • Kneel with both knees on the ground.
  • Bring your left foot forward so that your left knee gets directly above your left ankle.
  • Extend your right leg behind you, so that your right knee gets behind your right hip, and the top area of your foot is on the floor.
  • Rest your hands on your left thigh.
  • Put the top of your back foot into the floor; hold for a few seconds, and repeat the same on the opposite side. This completes one rep.

2) Standing hip flexor stretch

How to do the standing hip flexor stretch?

  • Stand straight.
  • Keep your feet at a hip-width distance.
  • Put your left foot forward, and take a split stance or a staggered stance position.
  • Engage your core, and contract your pelvis. Place both your hands on your left leg.
  • Make sure to keep your back leg absolutely straight, and start lunging forward with your left leg till you feel a slight stretch in the front part of your hips, right thigh and groin.
  • Hold this position for ten to 20 seconds. If you experience pain, ease off the stretch.
  • Slowly return to the start.
  • Perform the same on the opposite side.
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3) Hips elevated stretch

How to do the hips elevated stretch?

  • Lie straight on your back. You can use an exercise mat.
  • Extend your legs out in front of you, and keep your arms at your sides.
  • Place a block or roller directly under your low back and hips in a way that your hips are elevated, and your head and shoulders are resting on the mat.
  • Gently bend your right knee; place your arms around your shin, and bring it towards your chest.
  • Hold this position for a minute if you can, release and relax.
  • Repeat the move on the opposite side.

4) Kneeling hip flexor stretch

How to do the kneeling hip flexor stretch?

  • Take a half kneel position with your left leg one or teo feet in front of your right leg. Your left knee should form a 90-degree angle. You may use a mat for comfort and cushioning.
  • Place your hands on your left knee, and maintain a straight posture. Lean forward slightly till you feel a stretch in your hip, thigh and groin.
  • Hold the position for a few seconds, and release.
  • Switch sidesl and repeat.
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5) Glute bridge

How to do the glute bridge?

  • Place an exercise or yoga mat on the floor.
  • Lie straight on your back. Keep your arms by your side; bend your knees, and keep your feet flat on the ground.
  • Engage your glutes, and slowly lift your hips to create a bridge between your knees and shoulders.
  • Continue raising your hips till you feel a light stretch in your iliopsoas muscles. If it pains, slightly lower your hips, but keep your glutes engaged.
  • Hold this position for a few seconds, and lower your hips to the mat.
  • Repeat.
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6) Half frog stretch

How to do the half frog stretch?

  • Lie down on your stomach on a yoga mat. Stretch your legs behind you. Rest your head gently on the back of your hands.
  • Bend your left knee so that it gets parallel to your left hip, and simultaneously flex your left foot. Your left shin should be parallel to your right leg.
  • Press your left knee into the mat, and bring your left inner thigh close to the mat.
  • Hold for a minute or two, and repeat the same on the opposite side.
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Summary

Whether you are a regular gym-goer or someone who has a long sitting job, iliopsoas stretches will help you avoid any type of body pain that comes with weak psoas muscles. These stretches will also help improve your posture and prevent flexibility and stability complications.

Edited by Bhargav