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How to Do the Stretch That Works Both the Quads and Glutes?

Image via Pexels/Pavel Danilyuk
Image via Pexels/Pavel Danilyuk

Stretching all parts of the body is extremely important as it helps keep the soreness away after a tough gym sesh. Unfortunately, stretches are often neglected, especially in the legs.

The quadriceps are the largest muscle group in our legs. They’re called the quads because they comprise of four major muscles that provide structure to our thighs: rectus femoris, vastus lateralis, vastus medialis and vastus intermedius.

Similarly, gluteus muscles also consist of three muscles: gluteus minimus, gluteus medius, and gluteus maximus.

We’re all aware of exercises to train these muscles, in terms of strength and size. Common examples are:

Squats

• Hip thrusters

• Lunges

• Deadlifts

While everyone is fairly regular with their leg days training these muscles, not everyone remembers spending time stretching them.


Why is it important to stretch your glutes and quads?

Given that these muscles are the powerhouse of the legs, it’s important to keep them flexible. Muscles that are strengthened over time tend to become tight and inflexible. This leads to impaired movement in the surrounding joints and causes higher risk of injury.

When the muscles of the thighs and hips are inflexible, it affects the whole core, leading to postural issues. Bad posture means more room for injury.

Image via Pexels/Cliff Booth
Image via Pexels/Cliff Booth

Incorporating flexibility work at the end of your workout routine, or at least two to three times weekly, will help improve mobility in your body to a significant extent.


The best stretches for the quads and glutes

While it is hard to determine which one is the best, we’ll discuss the four best stretches for these muscles. Each of these poses work other muscles too, such as abductors and hamstrings.

Seated twist

• Sit down with your legs out straight in front of you. Bend your right leg up at the knee. Place your right foot next to your left knee. Ensure your shoulders are tall and your back is straight.

• Place your left elbow on the outer edge of your right knee in front of you, and twist your shoulders to the right. You may place your right hand behind you to help twist more. Turn your gaze over your right shoulder.

• Hold the pose for 20 to 30 seconds, then repeat on the other side.

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Seated four-figure stretch

• Sit upright on a chair. Lift your right leg and place your right ankle on your left thigh, a little above the left knee.

• Ensuring your spine is straight, lean forward as much as you can.

• Hold the pose for 20 to 30 seconds, then repeat on the other leg.

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Lying trunk twist

• Lie on the floor on your back. Place your arms out by your sides at shoulder level. Lift your right leg up and bend it at a 90-degree angle at the knee.

• Drop your right knee to floor on the left side of your body, allowing your hips to twist with it but keeping your shoulders planted to the ground.

• Hold the pose for 20 to 30 seconds, then repeat on the other leg.

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Pigeon pose

• Get into a high-plank position on the floor. Bring your right knee forward and place it between your hands. Allow your right foot to sit just in front of the left side of your hip.

• Drop your hips to the ground and allow your left leg to straighten out behind you.

• To get a deeper stretch, drop your head to the ground in front of your right knee.

• Hold the pose for 20 to 30 seconds, then repeat on the other side.

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Image via Pexels/Kampus Production
Image via Pexels/Kampus Production

Stretches are important for everyone, regardless of age, activity levels, lifestyle habits, etc. This helps keep ypur posture in check and general flexibilty as well. Whether you perform stretch sessions a couple of times a week, or after your workout every day, be sure you don't neglect them. You may even finally get rid of those back aches! Try these stretches out and see how they make you feel.

Poll : Do you stretch regularly?

I'm quite regular.

Not as often as I should

52 votes

Edited by Prem Deshpande
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