My hips are so tight! What can I do?
Regular exercise and movement helps to keep all our body, hips included, more flexible. Did you know a regular YIN yoga practice is one of the best ways to do this!
Question is, how does a practice where we hold yoga poses passively for a few minutes (typically 3-5) while targeting our connective tissue comprised of the fascia, ligaments, joints and bones, help with tight hips?
Yin practice works by stretching the myofascial network – sheets of connective tissue below the skin that encase the muscles. You can think of fascia like a sort of shrink wrap around your muscles and your bones. Fascia helps muscles to glide smoothly over each other. If we have had an injury, if we have not been moving or exercising regularly, sitting for long hours every day, aging and its accumulated wear and tear – – all this underuse will make our connective tissue less elastic and flexible, which can lead to aches and stiffnes not just in our hips but we often into our lower back area as well. Research shows Fascia needs at least 120 seconds / 2 minutes of sustained stretching to start to create more flexibility. The longer, passive holds in a Yin practice, are very effective at releasing tension and improving flexibility. With regular practice your body begins to move with more ease and tension in the hips and elsewhere starts to lessen. Why not give it a try! ~~ Laurie Dean