For wellness and longevity, your hips must support all your activities. If you bend your hips properly, you can move beyond old patterns of chronic pain and reinjury.
But do you feel your hips holding you up as you read this? Would you know what we mean if we were to ask you to “sit into your hips?” Do you know they provide you with a tremendous source of power?
Generally speaking, Americans are not brought up to value their hips. Many years ago, a certain singer named Elvis Presley raised a national scandal when he gyrated them on live television. Even today, the idea of paying attention to our hips can trigger unease or even shame about our bodies. Yet when you consider them in purely functional terms, you see they offer support for your knees and back when you perform everyday movements such as walking, standing up and bending over.
When you use your hips, you take strain off smaller muscles and activate the larger ones that assist in leg and spine movement. Those muscles become stronger in turn, making it easier for you to climb stairs, tote that big box or pick up your grandchild on the playground.
Discovering the power of your hips may also improve posture. Strong hips provide a solid base for your trunk whether you are sitting or standing. This can remedy postural problems such as craning your neck and rounding your upper back excessively.
So how do you learn to gyrate—or rather, bend your hips for better movement and posture? At Third Way Chiropractic, we combine chiropractic adjustments with a therapeutic exercise program that meets your unique needs, abilities and background.
Our safe and gentle exercises use little to no resistance and minimal space. We teach you the dynamic aspect of your hips in a one-on-one environment. Using a variety of approaches, we help you learn simple movement patterns that build mobility and strength throughout your body. Because we focus on basic hip function, you may progress more quickly than you expect. Once you’ve become proficient at our exercises, you can apply your snazzy new hip-bending skills to complex activities such as yoga, golfing and gardening.
But don’t be discouraged if you find the process frustrating. Many people struggle to connect with their hips when they have either lost or never developed “muscle sense” in that part of their bodies. Give yourself space for uncertainty and awkwardness while you grow in your new hip-bending abilities.
Your hips aren’t a national scandal, they’re there to stabilize you and keep you moving. Let us help you connect (or reconnect) with them and tap into their power potential.
- By Charles Muir