The Hip Hinge: Move Those Hips!

The Hip Hinge is a very important movement to not only be doing in the gym but also in your everyday life.  It causes you to use your hips (meaning your strong hip muscles, such as the glutes and hamstrings) to perform various activities and lift various objects.  By using the hips you can save your lower back from a lot of unneeded stress and risk of injury, while developing strong, powerful hips in the process.

Watch the video below to get an idea on how to practice the hip hinge using a pole or dowel rod.


To walk you through what you see in the video, I am holding a pole/stick against my back keeping contact with three areas, the tail bone, middle upper back, and the back of my head.  By keeping these three points in contact with the pole, my back is going to remain straight.  I set my feet up shoulder width apart and keep my knees “soft”.  What I mean by “soft” is that they are not hyperextended or bent.  They are just the way the would be if I was standing in the middle of a room comfortably.  Without bending the knees any more, push the hips back.  As the hips are pushed back the upper body will move forward and down, moving as one segment without any arching throughout any area of the back.  Once the hips are back, I personally feel my weight into my heels and a slight stretch in my hamstrings.  To come back to the starting position, push your hips forward and stand back up into a tall standing position.  When you reach vertical squeeze the glutes at the end of the movement.

Having the ability to do the hip hinge will protect your back in any deadlift movements and give you the ability to progress on to many different exercises created out of the hip hinge movement pattern.

Stay tuned for examples of different exercises rooted in the hip hinge movement in future posts.



About The Author

Kevin Fulton

Kevin Fulton is personal trainer in Pittsburgh, PA. His goal is to help his clients look, feel, and move better. In his spare time you can find him under a barbell or practicing jiu jitsu.

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