Butterfly Stretch for Happy Hips

This is a wonderful stretch for opening the hips, reducing pelvic tightness, aiding breathing and digestion.

More from my stretch studio in Newton Abbot! This is part of my daily routine and I often prescribe the for my patients. It’s good for low back pain and helps with the effects of osteoarthritis in the hips.

Like so many good yoga based exercises for back health, it is also very grounding.

Enjoy! Max the osteopath 🙂

My Personal Daily Stretch Routine

Every morning (nearly) I start the day with 5-10 minutes of stretching. It has a profound effect slowly but surely improving posture and energy whilst reducing stress and pain. It’s amazing how we look after so many of the objects that fill our lives but often overlook the most important – our bodies. It’s also an act of self love, sending a message of positive self respect and value to ourselves.

This routine covers most areas of the body. It will gently open up the low back and stretch import postural muscles like the hamstrings, quads and deep hip flexors like psoas. It stretches out the ribs and thorax and helps improve diaphragmatic breathing.

Remember that our bodies take time to soften up in the mornings so it’s preferable to have been up and about for at least 30 minutes before stretching. Choose a comfortable area of floor (carpet or rugs), make sure you’re warm and maybe use a pillow under your head. Take your time and stay mindful with the breath – let it soften areas of tightness and pain. Breathe into the areas of discomfort and don’t force anything.

You should start to feel a difference very quickly and this will slowly build with time. Hopefully you’ll get to a point where you’ll be wanting to do more each day.

More exercises will be appearing here from my stretch studio in Newton Abbot.

The Neutral Position

This is very therapeutic and nurturing position. It’s good for releasing tension in the low back and to return to between doing other postures to get a sense of before and after.

Add a pillow under the head if your neck is uncomfortable and make sure your warm. Stay in the position for a few minutes or longer if you feel it’s beneficial.

Take time to feel where the breath is in the body. Is it low in the abdomen or higher in the upper ribs. What’s is it’s character like? Is the breath smooth, coarse, deep, shallow, ragged? Experiment with resting your attention on the out breath. Does that feel different from resting attention in the in breath?

Try visualising the roots growing down from your body deep into the earth. After a few minutes compare how you feel to how you felt when you first laid down.

This can really help with acute low back pain.

I’ll be posting more from my clinic in Newton Abbot over the coming months.

Single Knee Hugs

This is a very gentle, simple but effective stretch for the low back. It can be very soothing and also helps give space to the lumbar spine.

Single Knee Hugs

Be gentle, work in a pain free range and try to co ordinate it with your breathing. It can be even more effective if you imagine your breath moving down to your low back and hips.

Spend a few moments grounding yourself in the “neutral position” before starting. See if you can detect a difference between each side of your body half way through.