If you experience tight flexor muscles, then you know how much it tends to be unsettling. Don’t you hate it when your hips feel tight every time you do lower body exercises like deadlift and squat? Constantly wondering whether you need to stretch, strengthen, or both doesn’t help the struggle either.
Poking around the internet doesn’t also help because all the conflicting opinions tend to confuse you even more. Some sources blame tight hip flexors on too much sitting expressing that it shortens and weakens the muscles. There is also a large group of people who blame weightlifting and some exercises. There are those who even say that muscle weakness is the primary cause of tight hip flexors.
It’s only natural to wonder whom you should believe or what you should do to fix the problem. However, the reality is that hip flexor tightness is not so cut and dried. There are, however, specific solutions that can fix it, we will discuss them in this article. But first…..
What is Hip Flexors?
They are a group of muscles found around the top of the thighs. They connect the upper leg and the hip. Hip flexors are involved in almost every kind of movement your lower body is engaged in, including deadlifts, squats, bench presses and overhead presses.
The primary hip flexors include rectus femoris, iliopsoas, Sartorius, pectineus, Tensor fasciae latae, adductor brevis, adductor longus, and gracilis. All these flexor muscles create flexion in the hip which is why they are called hip flexors.
Flexion is the term for the bending movement around joints in limbs like elbow or knee that helps decrease the angle between the limb bones at the joint.
So What Causes Hip Flexors?
The most common theory is that sitting happens to be the most significant cause of hip flexors. This is because sitting tightens the flexion muscles by forcing them to remain shortened for long periods of time. However, there is also another theory that overusing the muscles also results in tight hip flexors.
The assumption is that the more you participate in an intense exercise like weightlifting, you punish the muscles and hence increase the chances of the muscles becoming and remaining tight. There is also the general assumption by most people that both factors cause tight hip flexors.
These factors are, however, not entirely true. For example, the idea that sitting can temporarily or permanently shorten your hip flexors opposes the physiological fact that muscle can only become smaller or bigger, but initially, these muscles can’t change in length. This means that weightlifting might also not entirely be the cause of tight hip flexors.
Otherwise, the idea that extreme exercise might also be a lead cause opposes the research that has shown that exercises like strength training help improve the tendon function and muscles and also uses a rehabilitating tool for joint problems and pains.
Nevertheless, there is a possibility that you could injure your hip flexors while working out at home or the gym and this might result in tight hip flexors. You must be wondering by now, “then what causes hip flexors” right?
Well, this happens to be a somewhat mysterious phenomenon which is why there are so many assumptions of what causes it. The good news, however, is, some solutions can help relieve the tight hip flexors.
Some of the most common solutions revolve around specific exercises and stretches that help relieves the hip flexors. There are also exercises that will primarily target the lower body to help improve the impaired lower body mobility which is what gets in the way of deadlifting, squatting and other exercises. There is also “The unlock your hip flexors program” which is one of the solutions we recommend.
Solutions to Relieve Tight Hip Flexors
The Unlock Your Hip Flexors Program
This is a program developed by Rick Kaselj meant to unlock your hips and as a result, restore your natural movement. We root for this program because anyone can benefit from it. He has been able to pull together a sequential flow that has ten selected exercises meant to relieve the tight hip flexors.
The exercises include Static Stretching, PNF Stretching, 3-Dimensional Core Stability Exercises, Dynamic Stretching, Fascia Stretching, Mobility exercises and Muscle Activation. He has created a program that will help you know how to target the muscles that are hard to reach with some detailed step-by-step videos that will walk you through the moves.
Using this program will also allow you to discover how the natural survival mode of your body has been tricked into the permanent “danger” mode. As a result, you will know how to switch it off and experience faster fat loss and increased energy.
Rick will help you understand the main reason your psoas muscle changes structure and how that impacts ripples across your body making your muscle group compensate. He will also help you know how you might be affected by this problem if you tend to sit better part of your days or if you train too much at the gym.
Through this program, you will discover why intense core workouts might be causing you more harm if your hips aren’t loosened first. He will help you understand why the sit-ups and crunches are not helping you. You will realize why strong glutes and legs are crucial to your overall health and why you might need to avoid too much hip flexion.
He even goes an extra mile to make sure you understand how injury, stress, and trauma can affect your psychological state when they build up within your posture. You will finally understand that the cure is not to stop sitting but what you need to do is actively target the muscles to undo the damage of sitting for more extended hours.
Rick lets you know that “support” and “comfort” are the enemies of your natural physiology. He will tell you that forgetting support cushion, pillows and belts might actually help you move back towards your natural posture.
You will also find out how the tight hips have affected your sexual life and performance due to the decreased circulation and blood flow and what you need to do to achieve your sexual health again and probably save your relationship.
You will also learn to re-energize your thinking and clear your mind through learning how to relax the psoas muscle and help you wipe stress from your mind. The unlock your hip flexors is a win a win, not only will you deal with your tight hip flexors, it will leave you mentally healthy as well.
Stretches of Tight Hip Flexors
Typically, when we have a tight muscle, the first instinct is to stretch. However, even though stretching can benefit the body, it doesn’t entirely solve muscle tightness. It depends on what causes your problem in the first place.
This is where you have to test and see which of the following stretching exercises will work for you and work towards seeing that the hip flexors less aggravated or looser. In case it does, then make a note and add them to your list. Some of the stretches include:
Kneeling Hip Flexor Stretch: it targets the hip flexors, and it involves working on the stretch 2-3 minutes stretching per leg.
Psoas Quad Stretch: this stretch targets the psoas muscle which is a potent pelvic muscle. Lower back comfort is often as a result of a tight psoas muscle and when that’s the case doing squats becomes an impossible task. To do the stretch, you have to assume a position and drive your knee into the ground, lean forward into a deep stretch and then release. Repeat the stretch 2-3 minutes per leg.
Walking Knee Hug: this stretch targets the glutes and helps loosen your hips if they are both tight. The aim is to do at least 12 knee hugs per leg and hold the position for at least 2 seconds per stretching session.
Rectus Femoris Stretch: the rectus femoris is the largest hip flexor, and this stretch focuses on targeting it. Focus on the stretch 2-4 minutes per leg.
Scorpion Stretch: this stretch targets your glutes, flexors, and lower back. Do the stretch 3-5 times per leg in every stretching session.
Strengthening Exercises for Tight Hip Flexors
Strengthening exercises that target the hip flexors also help ease the tightness. As with the stretches, you are not sure what will work for you, so the idea is to find out what works for you by trying out what works out there.
Strengthening exercises will reduce the muscle-related pains, improve your joint health, give you a great set of legs, and reduces overall muscular pain. Here are a handful of exercises that might help with tight hip flexors:
- Barbell Back Squat: this exercises is one of the best squat variations, and it also happens to be a very effective exercise that helps build a solid muscular lower body. The fact that it’s a whole-body exercise allows it to involve all the muscle groups other than your chest. However, make sure that your thighs are slightly below parallel to the floor or mat at the bottom of the squat, making sure the butt is below the knees.
- Barbell Front Squat: this exercise targets the core and quadriceps and requires much less flexibility compared to back squat. It creates less torque in the knees and less compression of the spine, making it particularly useful for people with knee or back limitations or injuries.
- Lunge: this is a practical leg exercise that benefits everyone. It helps build muscle, balance, and strength and also addresses the muscular imbalances because it’s a single-leg movement. You can make it more effective by using dumbbells.
- Leg Press: this exercise is friendly to beginners because it requires less technical skill and allows you to load heavier weights because it stabilizes the muscles. And also, due to its large range of motion, it helps build hip strength.
- Bulgarian Split Squat: this is a unilateral leg exercise and its very effective for training your hip flexors, hamstrings and glutes.
- Pendulum: this exercise will strengthen your core and hips. Begin with a small movement and increase the range motion as you become stronger.
It is essential to find out what works for you and while you are trying to find that out, make sure you stay as active as you can. Staying inactive for long periods of times also makes your hip flexors tight which is what you should be aiming to avoid in the first place.
Staying active means that you will also need to significantly reduce the number of hours you sit and also see your physical therapist to find out what will work for you and the appropriate level of activity you should indulge in for the tight hip flexor.
Things To Know Before Getting Involved With “Hip Flexors Program”
This program by Rick is a complete course that will educate you on how you will gain more strength, feel more energized and lose more fat easily by letting go hip flexors. The course will also teach you how to clear lactic acids, improve blood circulation, and metabolites in muscles by practicing some specific stretches and exercises.
Rick has correctly implemented the stretches and exercises to make sure that you get the best results. While on the course, you will be able to discover which stretching positions work for you the best. He has also included some bonuses for free in the program. That is:
- 7-Day Ant-Inflammatory Diet
- Unlock Your Tight Hamstrings
Pros of the Program
- It is one of the best programs in the market considering that there are so many stretching and fitness programs that offer quick solutions for tight hip flexors but fail to provide the results you want to achieve.
- It comes with a PDF that explains psoas functions clearly and why it is a significant muscle in the body
- The program provides an excellent base with options to buy add-ons after you purchase the main program.
- Comes with two free programs “How to unlock your hamstrings manual” and “the seven-day anti-inflammatory diet ”
- Offers specific movements that are easier than static stretching that you can apply and loosen your legs, hips and back
- Rick is a certified specialist in sport injuries
- The program is affordable
- Has a 60-day money back guarantee
Cons of the Program
- The add-ons can be a bit annoying
- It almost seems that the program insists on the fact that tight psoas muscle can increase the rate of fat storage as a marketing strategy
- The PDF lacks the links of the videos in the book which means you have to refer to the download page for you to get the videos
Summary of the Unlock Your Hit Flexors Program:
If you have been trying various stretches and exercises and you have seen no improvement, then you might consider exploring the program. You will be educated on:
- How to work out properly
- How to stay away from injuries
- How to re-balance your hips
- How to employ your group of muscles in your hip for optimum effect
It might ultimately be what offers you the keys you require to get rid of that tight hip flexor for good finally. The program will also explain why your previous attempts to cut weight and get a lean body never worked which might also be what you need to get that body you want so badly finally.
He will also teach you on how certain things are connected to your body and how some “chain reactions” occur. Overall, the program is affordable, great and legit. As long as you keenly follow the instruction Rick offers, the program will work. In case you actually sit a lot, or you have a job that requires you to stay glued to your desk better part of the day then you really need to get this program.
Let’s face it, when you have a tight hip flexor, it never stops nagging you. You always tend to feel them when you are sitting, laying, standing, walking, or working out and it interferes with your progress if you are trying to venture into lower body training.
With so many conflicting opinions all over about what actually causes tight hip flexors, trying to fix it can become even more frustrating especially if you are not getting the results you need. Fortunately, you can get results if you:
- Get the “Unlock your Hip Flexors ”
- Do a stretch several times a day for several days and find out if works out for you
- Do exercises that will strengthen your hip flexors
- Stay active
At the end of the day, you should not give up on fixing your tight hip flexor. If you haven’t, try Rick’s program while you still explore the world of stretch and strength exercises that might help ease the pain that comes from a tight hip flexor. You only have one body, your aim should be to take care of it as much as you can rather than wait for hip flexor problems to get worse.
Remember: Tight hip flexors are not a fatality!