by Sima Tamaddon
This hip-opener flow is absolutely one of my favorite sequences. It releases tension in the hip flexors, outer hips, and glutes, and is great for everyBODY. People who sit a lot or have been in a long car ride, runners, bikers - this sequence is for you
As you lunge with the knee hovering towards the ground, it opens up the hip flexors. It is great for progression work, too, because you can see how close you can get your knee to the ground and continue to work the knee closer and closer the more times you work through this video.
When you get to the part where you cross the knee over the ankle and squat down, you work to open the outer hips and glutes. This builds the muscles in your ankle and increases the proprioception in that planted foot. Working on the proprioception and balance on one leg is great for trail runners or those who have weak ankles. It's also effective training when working toward any one-legged movements, like a pistol squat.
I offered up the arm balance in this sequence because I know that it is a challenging pose. I know that not everyone will be able to do it. Hips in yoga hold our fears and anxieties. So as we open them up, sometimes we are more open to take on our fears, headfirst. I do know that over time this particular arm balance pose will slowly seem more and more possible. I think it is imperative to practice things we cannot do because it is humbling, and also if we could do everything, why bother showing up?