Open up your hip flexors for both back and hip pain relief in 1 minute


Sherwin Nicholson | Updated Oct 31, 2019



Aim for keeping your thigh against your stomach while keeping your other leg straight

Do both your hips and lower back become tight overnight?

Does it make it hard for you to get up out of bed to straighten your spine to even stand properly?

You may even find that the pain and stiffness returns whenever you either sit or stand all day.

Although there are many reasons for this to affect you…

There is something you can do now to help relieve this discomfort.

You need to begin your day with this simple 1 minute stretch.

Why?  If you prioritize your day and stretch your hip this way, it will help to immediately release some tension in both your hip and lower back.  You’ll able to get out of bed easier and with much less frustration.

Usually both areas seize up as you sleep.   This could be from injuries, aging, inflammation or severe muscle imbalances.

To Begin

As you wake up and as you find yourself feeling stiff, remain in your bed.  You don’t want to get up right away (without stretching) as this will just add to the problem.   Even if you need to go to the bathroom, just take a couple of minutes to do this quick stretch just prior.

  1. Lie flat on your back (or your side), which ever is the most comfortable for you at the time.
  2. Straighten out both of your legs and keep them parallel and together.
  3. Raise one up thigh to your stomach using your arms for support.
  4. Use both arms to hug one thigh to your abdominals.
  5. Hold for 1 minute minimum.
  6. Repeat with the other leg.


As you attempt this simple move:

  • Keep the straightened leg very straight if possible. If you need to bend it at first, that’s OK but aim to become straighter each morning.
  • Focus on bringing your thigh to your tummy rather than bringing your knee to your chest. This is better for releasing to correct area of your joints.  As your flexibility improves, you can aim for the latter.
  • Bring your thigh up in front of you or just off to the side.  You can vary it as you are holding or at different times in which you practice the move.
  • Avoid straining your neck or upper back when you hold.  This can happen so be careful.

Begin EVERY morning with this simple 1 minute stretch. You can do it on your side also.

This hip opening and tension releasing move is essential for anytime you wake up.  Even when you have a quick nap on the couch.

By the time that you have found that your mornings are experienced with stiffness and pain, you are very likely already in a state where any rest period (even a nap or just from sitting) leads to your hips and back becoming stiff again.

The key to overcoming this ordeal is to maintain your hip flexibility.

Once your hips become stiff, your lower back ends up doing all of the hard work and it also becomes worn out and stiff too.  No amount of lumbar care will help until your hips are active again.

This is why it is very common for people to have both areas of pain especially in the morning.

What you need to do from now on:

  1. Perform this 1 minute stretch every morning (both sides).
  2. Practice it also just before you go to bed (including naps).
  3. Do it as soon as you get home from work (sitting all day and driving long periods).
  4. Perform it (standing version below) when you are standing for longer periods of time during your day.

Remember, regardless of the reason of your discomfort, everyone’s hips and lumbar region become very prone to this chronic problem.  Hip pain is very common and well researched.

Even the best of us who consider ourselves quite fit can suffer from this problem occasionally.  It’s always in your best interest to be as proactive as possible with protecting your joint flexibility.


Stretch and open your hips also while standing

The best part of doing this exercise is that it is free and very empowering.  It’s something that helps you with your day and most of all the quality of your life.  Even though you may have seen or heard of this stretch, you now have a better understanding of both why and when you should be practicing it.

So begin now! Go to your bed or to a comfortable surface and begin.  You’ll always benefit from this exercise every time!

If you want to know more about how to overcome your chronic pain:

Why it hurts every morning

More exercises for relieving your pain now

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