Improve Hip Mobility To Relieve Lower Back Pain

August 30, 2017 by Dr Joe Tichio0

You’ve probably heard how important it is to stretch tight hip flexors when you have back pain, but did you know that your hip is a ball and socket joint?  It’s one of the most mobile joints in your body and to keep it healthy requires a full range of motion.  If it’s not moving well, your lower back will pay the price.

Here’s a short video that will help improve your hip mobility and decrease your back pain…

Dr. Joe Tichio, DC


Hi, Dr. Joe Tichio here.

You’ve probably heard how important it is to stretch tight hip flexors when you have back pain, but did you know that your hip is a ball and socket joint? It’s one of the most mobile joints in your body and to keep it healthy requires a full range of motion. If it’s not moving well, your lower back will pay the price.

To stop your back pain, stretching tight hip flexors is only part of the solution… it’s essential to have good hip mobility in ALL directions.

That’s why I am going to share with you 4 movements to unlock the full mobility of your hips to quickly reduce your lower back pain.

Before we start with the first movement, I want to point out that it’s important to warm your body up a little bit before you start mobility work.

The warm up can be something simple like going for a 5 minute walk, some light exercise, body weight squats, or even some myofascial release. This will help get some blood into the area and help loosen you up.

After that as we move into the hips, I am going to ask you to please be careful, listen to your body, and don’t push yourself to much. Mobility work is not like lifting weights. We are not trying to go heavier or harder. You have to listen to your body and do just enough.

I’ll walk you through the process and show you how to do it, we’ll go nice and slow. We’ll start off by rocking back and forth a few times then hold the position a little longer to get a deeper stretch.

The key thing with mobility work, is you want to feel a change in your body. It’s not about how long or deep you do the stretch. Instead you want to feel a positive change in the area we are working on. That could be the joint is looser, you have better flexibility, less restriction, more mobility…

So get in tune with your body, feel what’s happening and go easy.

The first movement…

Adductor Stretch

This movement works the strong muscles of the inner thigh.

Place your knees and feet on the ground.
Sit back on your heels.





Bring your upper body toward the ground and rest on your forearms.





Let your knees separate as far as they can without pain, you should feel a gentle stretch.

In position, rock your body back toward your heels and forward toward your hands 5 times. Each time going backward, let your buttocks move closer to your heels.

Feel the gentle stretch in your inner thighs.
On the last one keep your buttocks back toward your heels.
Then let your upper body sink down toward the ground.
Hold for 5 – 15 seconds.







This movement works bilateral hip rotation.

Start with your left hip (front leg) in external rotation.
Your right hip (rear leg) in internal rotation.

There should be 90 degree angles at both knees and ankles.






Your left hand is on the ground and working to stabilize the left hip, pushing it into the ground.

Your right arm reaches forward.

Hinging from the hip, don’t bend from the back. Do this 5 times.
On the last one hold for 5 – 15 seconds, with the right arm reaching and touching the ground.

Repeat on the other side.

Hip Flexor Stretch/Kneeling Lunge

This movement stretches the hip flexor and also engages the opposite hip in extension.

Start with the right side.
Place a towel on the ground to protect your knee. This also helps to lift the hip and give a deeper stretch.





The left knee is bent about 90 degrees.
Left knee should move slightly outward toward the little toe. That will keep your knee, hip, and lower back safe during the stretch.

Turn upper body to face forward.

Tighten your abdominal muscles and right buttocks. This helps to support your lower back and give a deeper hip stretch.

Rock slightly forward bending the front knee toward the little toe for 5 times. The rocking movement eases up the joint and muscles.

Then hold the position and keep your upper body vertical. You can bend the front knee for a deeper stretch.

Reach up with the right arm and slightly bend toward the left for a deeper psoas stretch.





Repeat on the other side.

Standing Stretch

This movement works the hip joints, hamstring and adductor muscles.

You will need a surface about hip height to rest your leg and foot on.
You can use the top of a chair with a towel for padding. You can also use the top of a table, dresser, bed, or a bar stool, any surface that will lift your leg high enough.

If you feel tightness lower your leg, if you feel flexible go a little higher.

Start with the right foot resting on the surface toes pointing up and left foot on ground toes pointing straight forward.





Start with some basic hinging movement.  This comes from the hip not the lower back.  Rock or hinge forward and back to vertical. Should feel some tightness in the right leg.





Then, turn your whole body toward the right foot.  Bottom foot turns to point forward.





Then hinge your upper body toward the right foot- 5 times.

Next. Keep your upper body hinged forward and point toes away and bend them back toward your chest. Do this 5 times to warm up your leg.

Then on the last repetition, keep them pointed away and hinge your upper body forward. This will allow your upper body to move closer to your foot.





Then pull the toes back toward you, this will increase the stretch in your hamstrings.





Repeat on the other side.
Alright, those are the 4 movements to unlock the full mobility of your hips. Just remember to go gently, never push or struggle through stretching or mobility work.

One last tip- always work both sides evenly. Even if only one side feels tight, it’s important to work both sides the same.

Although these movements can improve the flexibility of your hips and reduce your lower back pain, they aren’t the total solution.

Hip mobility is just one part of a 13 step process that will help you sit, stand, lift, and walk away from back pain, so you can feel younger, move with confidence and prevent future injuries, click the button below to check out my step-by-step program, The Movement Revolution. See you inside!

Click Here To Check Out The Movement Revolution

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Disclaimer: The entire contents of this website are based upon the opinions of Dr. Joseph Tichio, DC, unless otherwise noted. This website is for information purposes only. By providing the information contained herein we are not diagnosing, treating, curing, mitigating, or preventing any type of disease or medical condition. The information on this website is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified healthcare professional and is not intended as medical advice. It is intended as a sharing of knowledge and information from the research and experience of Joseph Tichio, Doctor of Chiropractic and his community. We encourage you to make your own health care decisions based upon your research and in partnership with a licensed professional healthcare provider in your state.