June 18, 2013
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One of the most effective ways and best ways and quite frankly to train the hips as well as improve flexibility and range of motion is through the squat. You can begin this exercise by using your own body weight through a full range of motion, gradually progressing up to a weighted bar, even adding a more resistance from there.
English: Squat lifing (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
To begin the squat, address the bar in a loaded position, making sure hands are even, you’ll dock slightly under the bar, making sure that they body sits, the bar sits just across your upper back and shoulders. Elbows should remain under the bar for support and stability. Lift the bar up out of the rack, take a comfortable step back to clear yourself from the rack. Head will remain in a neutral position, back nice and flat, maybe slightly arch, feet should be at or maybe slightly wider than shoulders width. Initiate the movement by moving the hips away from the mid-line, bending at the knees and lowering yourself down as far as your flexibility and comfort will allow. Ideally, reaching a thigh’s parallel position or slightly lower, keeping the back in a good neutral position, bringing the hips back up again. Again, the motion and emphasis is on the hips, so initiate the move by moving the hips first, controlling the range of motion slowly and extending up fully by moving those hips back to that mid-line position. Safely rack the bar by making sure your balance on both sides and stepping clear.
It’s always good to have the support of a professional or even a good spotter when using free weights such as an Olympic lifting bar or rack. Make sure you’re staying as safe as possible while training those muscles.