When it comes to physical therapy treatments, hip strengthening exercises can play a crucial role. These exercises can lead to benefits like improved stability and reduced pain. Hip strengthening exercises for physical therapy can help patients with diverse conditions. Whether you are recovering from an injury or addressing a chronic condition, strengthening your hips can help. With a few simple exercises, you can work to improve your health every day.
Top physical therapy hip strengthening exercises
- Squats — Squats are a simple exercise. These can be a good warmup exercise and help strengthen your hips. To do squats, first stand with your feet shoulder width apart. Then bend your knees and lower your hips. Position yourself as if you are sitting back in a chair. You can hold this squat as long as you like. People will often hold a squat for a few seconds up to 15 or 30 seconds. Finally, return to your starting position. You can repeat this exercise several times in a row.
- Bridge — A basic bridge exercise can strengthen muscles throughout the body. This exercise mainly targets the legs, lower back and hips. To start, lie on your back. Your knees should be bent with your feet flat on the floor. You can reach the bridge position by lifting your hips off the ground. For effective exercise, it can help to hold this position for at least a few seconds. You can then lower your hips and repeat.
- Lunges — Lunge exercises start in the standing position. Posture is important; make sure to keep your feet apart at hip width. This physical therapy exercise can be great for hip strengthening. You can start by stepping one foot forward and lowering to a lunge position. This involves keeping your lunging foot flat and bending both knees. Using the heel of your front foot, push back to the starting position. From here, you can alternate legs with each repetition. Remember to keep your torso straight with this exercise. Doing so can keep your core engaged, which can help address hip issues.
- Standing kickbacks — This exercise is easy to practice. Accessibility makes this a great starting exercise for hip strengthening. Physical therapy specialists may recommend this exercise as part of an early treatment plan. First, secure your hands on a stable surface. This can be a wall, table or countertop. Next, lean your upper body forward while lifting a foot off the floor. Extend that leg backward as far as you can comfortably manage. At full functionality, you may be able to extend your leg between 60 and 90 degrees. Physical therapy patients often have difficulty reaching this range at first, though. Some health conditions can make this exercise challenging. Bending the standing leg can make the exercise more comfortable for those having difficulty with this exercise. After extending, bring your leg back. Standing kickbacks can be easily repeated, alternating sets on each leg.
- Step-ups — Step-ups require a low platform to begin. The platform should be at knee height or lower. This can be something as simple as a step stool. Step onto the platform with one foot to begin. You can then bring the other foot up. After that, step back down and repeat with the other leg. This exercise simulates walking up a flight of stairs. Step-ups can improve strength in the legs and hip.
- Leg lifts — This exercise is sometimes called a side-lying leg lift. Like this name suggests, the exercise begins positioned on your side. Lie sideways with your legs straight and on top of each other. To do this exercise, lift your top leg upward toward the ceiling. Ensure that your leg stays straight. Then lower your leg back down slowly. Like several of the other exercises, this can be especially effective when repeated on both sides.
- Clamshells — Clamshells are another lying exercise. With this exercise, you will want to lie on your side and bend your knees. Keeping your feet together is also important. With your feet together, open and close your knees like a clamshell. You can repeat this exercise on both sides of your body. Clamshells can be good for your pelvic muscles and hip flexors.
Practice hip strengthening exercises with Lattimore Physical Therapy
Exercises are a great start, but it may take more to keep your hips strong. With Lattimore Physical Therapy, you can build a comprehensive physical therapy treatment plan. This can incorporate exercise routines as well as specialized therapy treatments that can be difficult to find elsewhere. If you want to take your hip strengthening exercises to the next level, physical therapy can help.
Contact our team today for more information or to schedule an initial appointment.