Written by 8:02 pm Yoga, BLOG

16 Best Hip-Opening Yoga Poses To Relieve Tight Hips

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Tight hips can be a real hassle, both physically and in our daily lives. We often find ourselves stuck in chairs or glued to screens for hours on end, leaving our hip joints feeling stiff and uncomfortable.

But don’t worry – Hip-Opening Yoga poses are here to help! This ancient practice isn’t just about striking fancy poses; it’s a journey to make your hips feel better and give you a newfound sense of flexibility and well-being.

In this guide, we’ll dive into 16 Hip-Opening Yoga poses that will help you say goodbye to those stubborn knots in your hips, making your everyday activities much more comfy.

Whether you’re a yoga expert or a total newbie, these poses are designed to bring balance and relief to your hips, making you stand taller, walk more easily, and sit without aches and pains.

So, unroll your yoga mat, take a deep breath, and let’s explore the wonderful tight hips Yoga poses together!

The Impact Of Tight Hips

Hip-Opening Yoga

It’s pretty amazing how something as seemingly small as tight hips can cast a shadow over our daily lives.

When your hips aren’t as bendy as they should be, it’s not just about feeling uncomfortable; it affects how you feel overall.

Tight hips can make it tough to move around comfortably, they might give you a sore lower back, and they can even mess up how you stand or sit. But tight hips opening Yoga poses are like a breath of fresh air for your lower body.

They gently encourage your hips to open up, releasing the built-up tension and making it easier to move.

So, whether you’ve been dealing with discomfort for ages or you’re just curious about yoga, Hip-Opening Yoga poses are like a magic key to a more comfortable, flexible, and balanced life.

16 Hip-Opening Yoga Poses

Butterfly Pose (Baddha Konasana)

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Butterfly Pose, also known as Baddha Konasana, is a gentle yet highly effective hip opener that helps release tension in the inner thighs and groins.

This pose resembles the graceful fluttering of butterfly wings, making it an excellent choice for those seeking to ease tight hips.

With regular practice, Butterfly Pose can improve flexibility in the hip region, promoting greater comfort and freedom of movement.

To Perform It:

  1. Start in a seated position with your legs extended straight.
  2. Bend your knees and bring the soles of your feet together, allowing your knees to fall outward.
  3. Hold your feet with your hands, clasping your fingers around your toes.
  4. Sit up tall, lengthening your spine, and engage your core.
  5. Gently press your knees toward the floor while keeping your back straight.
  6. Hold the pose for 1-2 minutes, breathing deeply and allowing your hips to gradually open.

Pigeon Pose (Eka Pada Rajakapotasana)

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Pigeon Pose, or Eka Pada Rajakapotasana, is a potent hip opener that targets deep-seated tension in the hip flexors and rotators.

This pose provides a powerful stretch and helps to alleviate discomfort caused by tight hips.

As you delve into Pigeon Pose, you’ll find it to be both challenging and transformative, offering relief and enhanced flexibility to your hip region.

To Perform It:

  1. Begin in a plank position with your wrists under your shoulders.
  2. Bring your right knee forward toward your right wrist, placing it near your right hand.
  3. Angle your right shin diagonally across your mat, with your foot closer to your left hip.
  4. Extend your left leg straight back and point your toes.
  5. Square your hips to the front of the mat and lower your torso over your right leg.
  6. You can use props like yoga blocks or a cushion for support under your hip if needed.
  7. Hold Pigeon Pose for 1-2 minutes, focusing on your breath and allowing your hips to release tension.

Extended Triangle Pose (Utthita Trikonasana)

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Extended Triangle Pose, known as Utthita Trikonasana, combines a profound hip stretch with the benefits of lengthening the spine and improving balance.

It’s a versatile pose that not only opens the hips but also engages multiple muscle groups, enhancing overall body awareness and flexibility. Incorporating this pose into your practice can be transformative for your hip mobility.

To Perform It:

  1. Start in a wide-legged stance with your feet 3-4 feet apart, toes facing forward.
  2. Turn your right foot out 90 degrees and your left foot slightly inwards.
  3. Extend your arms out to the sides, parallel to the floor.
  4. Reach your right arm forward and shift your hips to the right, keeping your legs straight.
  5. Lower your right hand to your right shin, ankle, or the floor, depending on your flexibility.
  6. Extend your left arm straight up toward the ceiling.
  7. Maintain a straight line from your left hand to your left foot.
  8. Hold Extended Triangle Pose for 30 seconds to 1 minute on each side, breathing deeply and enjoying the hip-opening benefits.

Lizard Pose (Utthan Pristhasana)

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Lizard Pose, or Utthan Pristhasana, is a deep hip opener that provides an intense stretch to the hip flexors, groin, and hamstrings.

This pose is particularly effective at targeting areas of tension in the hips, making it a valuable addition to hip-opening yoga sequences.

Whether you’re a seasoned yogi or a beginner, Lizard Pose offers the potential for greater hip flexibility and relief from tightness.

To Perform It:

  1. Begin in a plank position with your wrists aligned under your shoulders.
  2. Step your right foot forward to the outside of your right hand.
  3. Lower your hips toward the floor, feeling a deep stretch in your right hip.
  4. Keep your back leg straight or lower it to the ground for a more intense stretch.
  5. You can choose to stay on your hands or lower down to your forearms for a deeper variation.
  6. Hold Lizard Pose for 1-2 minutes on each side, focusing on your breath and allowing your hips to gradually release tension.

Happy Baby Pose (Ananda Balasana)

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Happy Baby Pose, also known as Ananda Balasana, is a playful and delightful tight hip yoga pose that not only provides relief from lower back discomfort but also opens the hips and inner thighs.

This pose gets its name from the happy and carefree feeling it can evoke as you rock gently from side to side.

Happy Baby Pose is a fantastic addition to your hip-opening yoga practice, offering both physical and mental relaxation.

To Perform It:

  1. Begin by lying on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor.
  2. Exhale and bring your knees toward your chest.
  3. Reach for the outsides of your feet with your hands, grabbing onto your big toes.
  4. Keep your knees bent and open them wider than your torso, bringing them toward your armpits.
  5. Flex your feet, so the soles are facing the ceiling.
  6. Gently pull your feet downward, using your arm strength to bring your knees closer to the floor.
  7. You can rock gently from side to side to massage your lower back.
  8. Hold Happy Baby Pose for 1-2 minutes, breathing deeply and enjoying the stretch.

Frog Pose (Mandukasana)

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Frog Pose, or Mandukasana, is a powerful hip opener that targets the groin and inner thighs. This unique pose is particularly effective at increasing hip flexibility and can be both challenging and rewarding. As you sink into Frog Pose, you’ll find it to be a transformative addition to your hip-opening yoga routine.

To Perform It:

  1. Begin on your hands and knees in a tabletop position.
  2. Slowly spread your knees apart as wide as they will comfortably go.
  3. Flex your feet so that the soles are facing the ceiling.
  4. Keep your elbows under your shoulders.
  5. Begin to lower your hips toward the floor while maintaining alignment with your elbows and wrists.
  6. You can stay on your hands or lower down to your forearms for a deeper stretch.
  7. Hold Frog Pose for 1-2 minutes, breathing deeply and allowing your hips to open gradually.

Bridge Pose (Setu Bandha Sarvangasana)

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Bridge Pose, known as Setu Bandha Sarvangasana, is a versatile hip opener that also strengthens the lower back and legs. This pose provides a wonderful balance between opening the hips and engaging various muscle groups, making it an excellent choice for overall mobility and strength.

As you practice Bridge Pose, you’ll notice increased flexibility in the tight hips region, along with improved spinal alignment.

To Perform It:

  1. Begin by lying on your back with your knees bent and feet hip-width apart.
  2. Your arms should be alongside your body, palms facing down.
  3. Press through your feet and lift your hips toward the ceiling.
  4. Interlace your fingers under your body and roll your shoulders beneath you, lifting your chest slightly.
  5. Keep your neck relaxed and gaze straight up or slightly backward.
  6. Hold Bridge Pose for 30 seconds to 1 minute, breathing deeply and engaging your glutes.

Garland Pose (Malasana)

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Garland Pose, also known as Malasana, is a grounding and deeply satisfying hip opener. This yoga pose involves a squatting position that helps stretch the hips, groin, and lower back.

Additionally, Malasana promotes hip flexibility and strength, making it an essential pose for improving overall hip health. As you settle into this earthy posture, you’ll find a sense of connection with your lower body and a release of tension in the tight hips area.

To Perform It:

  1. Start by standing with your feet slightly wider than hip-width apart.
  2. Turn your toes slightly outward, about 45 degrees.
  3. Lower your body into a deep squat position, bringing your hips close to the ground.
  4. If possible, bring your heels to the floor, or you can place a folded mat or cushion under your heels for support.
  5. Press your palms together in a prayer position at your chest, using your elbows to gently push your knees outward.
  6. Keep your chest lifted and your spine as straight as possible.
  7. Hold Garland Pose for 30 seconds to 1 minute, breathing deeply and finding ease in the stretch.

Cow Face Pose (Gomukhasana)

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Cow Face Pose, or Gomukhasana, is a seated yoga pose that combines hip opening with a deep shoulder stretch. This posture is excellent for improving hip flexibility and mobility while also promoting relaxation and balance.

Practicing Cow Face Pose regularly can help alleviate stress in the tight hips and shoulders, making it a valuable addition to your yoga routine.

To Perform It:

  1. Begin in a seated position with your legs extended in front of you.
  2. Bend your knees and bring your right knee over your left, stacking them on top of each other.
  3. Slide your left foot toward your right hip.
  4. Reach your left arm up and bend it at the elbow, bringing your hand down your back.
  5. Reach your right arm behind your back and bend it at the elbow, aiming to clasp your fingers together.
  6. If your fingers don’t meet, you can use a strap to bridge the gap between your hands.
  7. Hold Cow Face Pose for 30 seconds to 1 minute on each side, breathing deeply and feeling the stretch in your hips and shoulders.

Low Lunge (Anjaneyasana)

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Low Lunge, known as Anjaneyasana, is a versatile yoga pose that combines hip opening with a strengthening element. This pose is excellent for improving hip flexibility and strength, making it a valuable addition to your yoga practice. Low Lunge also helps improve balance and stability while offering relief to tight hips.

To Perform It:

  1. Start in a plank position with your hands beneath your shoulders.
  2. Step your right foot forward between your hands.
  3. Lower your hips and sink into a lunge, keeping your left knee off the ground.
  4. Ensure that your right knee is directly above your right ankle.
  5. Keep your left leg straight and engaged, with your toes pointed.
  6. Hold Low Lunge for 30 seconds to 1 minute, breathing deeply and feeling the stretch in your hips and thighs.
  7. Switch and repeat on the other side

Seated Forward Bend (Paschimottanasana)

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Seated Forward Bend, or Paschimottanasana, is a calming and introspective yoga pose that stretches the entire back of your body while gently opening the hips.

This pose is perfect for reducing stress and promoting relaxation. As you fold forward and release tension in the tight hips and hamstrings, you’ll experience a sense of peace and serenity.

To Perform It:

  1. Begin in a seated position with your legs extended straight in front of you.
  2. Inhale to lengthen your spine and sit up tall.
  3. Exhale and hinge at your hips, reaching for your toes.
  4. If you can’t reach your toes, you can use a yoga strap or hold onto your shins.
  5. Keep your back straight as you fold forward from your hips.
  6. Gently engage your quadriceps to help protect your hamstrings.
  7. Hold Seated Forward Bend for 30 seconds to 1 minute, breathing deeply and surrendering to the stretch.

Half Lord Of The Fishes Pose (Ardha Matsyendrasana)

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Half Lord of the Fishes Pose, or Ardha Matsyendrasana, is a seated twist that not only opens the hips but also enhances spinal mobility.

This pose offers a unique combination of hip opening and spinal rotation, making it beneficial for overall flexibility and balance. As you practice Half Lord of the Fishes Pose, you’ll find it invigorating for your entire torso and hips.

To Perform It:

  1. Begin in a seated position with your legs extended in front of you.
  2. Bend your right knee and place your right foot on the outside of your left thigh.
  3. Keep your left leg extended and your foot flexed.
  4. Inhale and lengthen your spine.
  5. Exhale and twist your upper body to the right, hooking your left elbow outside your right knee.
  6. Place your right hand behind you for support.
  7. Hold Half Lord of the Fishes Pose for 30 seconds to 1 minute on each side, breathing deeply and finding ease in the twist.

Thread The Needle Pose (Parsva Balasana)

Thread the Needle Pose, known as Parsva Balasana, is a gentle hip opener that also provides a soothing stretch for the shoulders. This pose is excellent for releasing tension in the hips and improving hip mobility. Additionally, Thread the Needle Pose offers a sense of calmness and relaxation as you gently work through the tight hips region.

To Perform It:

  1. Start on your hands and knees in a tabletop position.
  2. Inhale and reach your right arm straight up toward the ceiling.
  3. Exhale and thread your right arm under your left arm, reaching as far as you comfortably can.
  4. Lower your right shoulder and cheek to the mat.
  5. Keep your left hand planted on the ground to provide support.
  6. Hold Thread the Needle Pose for 30 seconds to 1 minute on each side, breathing deeply and allowing your hips to release tension.

Reclining Hand-To-Big-Toe Pose (Supta Padangusthasana)

Reclining Hand-to-Big-Toe Pose, or Supta Padangusthasana, is a relaxing and therapeutic pose that targets the hips and hamstrings. This reclined posture is perfect for easing the tight hips and improving flexibility in the legs. As you practice this pose, you’ll experience a sense of release and rejuvenation in your hip region.

To Perform It:

  1. Begin by lying on your back with your legs extended.
  2. Bend your right knee and bring it toward your chest.
  3. Use a yoga strap or a hand towel to loop around your right foot, holding the ends in your right hand.
  4. Straighten your right leg toward the ceiling, keeping it as straight as possible.
  5. Hold Reclining Hand-to-Big-Toe Pose for 30 seconds to 1 minute on each side, breathing deeply and enjoying the stretch.
  6. Switch to the other leg and repeat the pose.

Supine Bound Angle Pose (Supta Baddha Konasana)

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Supine Bound Angle Pose, or Supta Baddha Konasana, is a deeply restorative and heart-opening yoga pose that also gently stretches the hips and inner thighs. This reclined posture is perfect for relaxation and releasing tension in the hip region. As you practice Supine Bound Angle Pose, you’ll feel a sense of openness and serenity in your hips and heart.

To Perform It:

  1. Begin by lying on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor.
  2. Allow your knees to fall open to the sides, bringing the soles of your feet together.
  3. You can place yoga blocks or cushions under your thighs for support if needed.
  4. Rest your arms at your sides with your palms facing up.
  5. Close your eyes and relax into the pose.
  6. Hold Supine Bound Angle Pose for 2-5 minutes, focusing on deep, calming breaths and enjoying the gentle hip stretch.

Supported Bridge Pose (Setu Bandha Sarvangasana Variation)

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Supported Bridge Pose, a variation of Setu Bandha Sarvangasana, is a deeply relaxing and therapeutic hip-opening pose that also supports the spine and lower back. This restorative posture is perfect for alleviating hip tightness and improving flexibility while offering a sense of tranquility. As you practice Supported Bridge Pose, you’ll experience a soothing release in your hips and a gentle stretch in your lower back.

To Perform It:

  1. Begin by lying on your back with your knees bent and feet hip-width apart.
  2. Place a yoga block or cushion under your sacrum, near the base of your spine.
  3. Adjust the height of the block or cushion to your comfort level.
  4. Relax your arms at your sides with your palms facing up.
  5. Close your eyes and settle into the pose.
  6. Hold the Supported Bridge Pose for 2-5 minutes, focusing on deep, relaxing breaths and enjoying the gentle hip stretch and lower back support.

Final Thoughts 

Integrating hip-opening yoga poses into your daily routine can be a transformative experience. These hip openers, designed specifically to open your hips and release tension, have the potential to bring about significant improvements in your flexibility, mobility, and overall well-being.

By regularly practicing these yoga poses to open hips, you not only alleviate the discomfort of tight hips but also nurture a profound sense of physical and mental harmony.

So, whether you’re a seasoned yogi or just beginning your yoga journey, don’t hesitate to embrace the power of hip-opening yoga.

Start incorporating these hip-opening yoga poses into your practice, and witness the positive changes they can bring to your body and soul.

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