Movement Forum 2: Glutes

Glutes

What we were stretching and why

The gluteals are a collection of synergistic muscles that are mainly concerned with external rotation, (turning your feet out) extension (bringing your straight leg back) and adduction (bringing your leg out to the side). This collection of muscles are large, with the gluteus maximus being the largest muscle in the body, and are capable of producing incredible amounts of force, if working correctly.

Unfortunately, as a result of result of excessive sitting, tightness in other muscles and improper movement mechanics the glutes become weak, inactive and tight.

The aims of the movement forum this month are:

  • To stretch and relieve tension in your glutes.
  • Increase awareness of these muscles.
  • Perform exercises which will hopefully wake up the deep external rotators and allow for your glutes to begin “firing” properly.
  • With your glutes more awake and stronger, we will then play with balancing drills and games.

How we stretched it

Solo piriformis

  • Start cross-legged
  • Take one leg over the over and ensure that both pelvic bones are on the floor
  • Lean forward and grab knee with opposite arm
  • Extend out along the leg and pull the leg and chest up
  • Do contract/relax cycles pushing the knee into the bracing arm

Partner piriformis

  • Start in the 90/90 position
  • Lean forward and extend the trailing leg out backwards
  • Extend upright ensuring that back is kept straight
  • Use partner to push the hips around and square the hips
  • Contract by pushing the foot into the floor and then the knee
  • Breathe out and extend towards the knee

90/90 stretch and strengthening

  • Start in 90/90 position
  • Similar cues to the previous stretch
  • Do contract and relax cycles for 3 positions
  • Towards knee
  • Towards shin
  • Towards foot
  • When the stretches are done on one side switch to the other side by keeping feet planted and shifting legs over
  • Repeat on other side
  • Then do repetitions of changing from one side to the other

Exercises:

  • Skater squats
  • Bird-dogs/single leg extension exercises