Fitness

11 Yoga Moves That'll Melt Away Hip Tightness

Do these after a long day at your desk.

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If you need to release tension in the muscles around the hips, try working through yoga hip openers, says yoga teacher Judy Lee. They can help alleviate tightness and make you feel better after a long day of sitting. Here are 11 poses recommended by the pros.

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Lizard Pose

Lee says this move stretches the hip flexors.

- Get into low lunge, right knee over ankle.

- Walk right foot to edge of mat.

- Place both hands inside right foot.

- Option: Come down onto forearms for a deeper stretch.

Hold for 1 minute on each side.

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Half Pigeon

Yoga teacher Kelly Clifton Turner likes this hip-opening pose.

- Start on mat with one bent leg in front of you, the other stretched back.

- Pelvis is even on both sides.

- Option: Lean forward, extend arms.

- Breathe into pose.

Hold for a few minutes on each side.

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Child’s Pose

Turner says this one will open your hips and back.

- Start in tabletop.

- Bring big toes to touch with knees open.

- Sink your hips back.

- Allow torso and forehead to rest toward the ground.

- Reach arms forward.

Hold for a few minutes.

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Happy Baby

Turner also recommends this pose for tight hips.

- Lie on your back.

- Raise your knees into the air.

- Grab the outside of each foot.

- Keep your elbows in between legs.

- Breathe.

- Option: Rock back and forth.

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High Crescent Lunge

Turner says this pose generates heat and opens hip flexors.

- From downward dog, inhale and step right leg between hands.

- Hands at hips, slowly rise up. Keep bend in front knee.

- Extend arms overhead.

- Sink into front leg.

Repeat on other side.

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Frog Pose

Instructor Michelle Smith likes this pose to address tight hip muscles.

- From tabletop, shift knees out to sides, stretch inner thighs.

- Lower to forearms.

- Use a pillow or yoga bolster for support if needed.

Hold 1 to 3 minutes, then gently ease out of posture.

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Supine Twist

The supine twist helps release back and hip tension, says Smith.

- Start on back, knees bent, feet on outer edges of mat.

- Slowly lower your knees to left.

- Option: Lift left foot, place it on inner right thigh.

- Hold for 1 to 3 minutes.

Switch sides.

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Yoga Squat

Certified yoga pro Mimi Ghandour calls this “the ultimate hip opener.”

- Feet hip-distance apart, feet slightly turned out.

- Lower into squat, knees facing out.

- With hands to heart, use elbows to open knees.

- Press weight into heels, keep torso up.

Hold 10 breaths.

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Warrior II

Ghandour says this grounding pose helps build strength and opens the hips.

- Spread legs wide, turn right foot slightly out.

- Lunge forward, bend right knee over ankle.

- Stretch arms away from each other at shoulder height.

- Keep torso raised.

Hold 10 breaths.

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Low Lunge

This pose from Ghandour feels great after sitting all day.

- Wide lunge position.

- Lower back knee to ground. Back toes tucked.

- Stretch arms overhead. Press weight into front foot.

- Breathe, shift hips forward to deepen stretch.

Hold for a few breaths on both sides.

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Butterfly Pose

Yoga teacher Shana Chauvin recommends this move.

- Start seated on mat.

- Let knees drop open, soles of feet touching.

- Draw heels to groin. Hold onto toes.

- Stack shoulders over hips.

- Take deep breath, exhale, hinge forward at hips.

Hold for a few minutes.