Closed Chain Hip Control
Here are 5 drills where the goal is improved control of the pelvis on top of a fixed femur. Frequently we mobilize the hip with the moving leg in space on a stable hip. This is definitely important, but when we need functional control of the hip, it will often happen on top of a planted leg. These drills work to improve strength & control of the deep hip rotators (among others).
Side note to my BMX Flatland fam – this is VERY important for us!
These drills are best done barefoot, as they strengthen the foot as well. Before bending forward on any of these exercises, lock your ribs down & engage your core, keep this tension thru the exercise.
1 – Single Leg Hip Hinge w/pole: 3 points of contact on the pole – back of head, mid-back, and butt. Do not loose contact as you hinge at the hip. Soft knee bend. Keep your low back flat, do not rotate away as you hinge! Work to 3 sets of 12/leg.
2 – Single Leg Hip Hinge, no pole: Same as above, now done without the feedback of the pole. The 3rd rep I do incorrectly so you can see what it looks like if you tilt your hip. Do 3 x 12/leg.
3 – Basic Hip Airplane: Start at the bottom of the single leg hinge. Rotate inward, then outward as far as you can control. It may help to think of pointing inward & outward with your belly button. Root into the ground with your foot. 3 x 8-10/side w/control.
4 – Hip Airplane Circle: Once #3 is mastered, add a slow rotation in both directions. This becomes a closed chain controlled articular rotation. (CARs) 3-5 x 3-5 reps.
5 – Weighted Hip Airplane Circle: Same as #4, holding light DBs to increase the demand. 3-5 x 3-5 reps.
Add these into your practice and see if your hips and back don’t end up feeling better!