By Dan Guttenplan, FNF Coaches Managing Editor
Maintaining flexibility in the hips and flexor muscles during the offseason can be as important for high school football players as making strength gains in the weight room. Players at every position need to move efficiently.
Brett Fischer is the owner/founder of the Fischer Institute in Phoenix, Ariz. He is a licensed physical therapist, certified athletic trainer, strength and conditioning specialist, and has worked with the New York Jets.
Fischer recommends six stretches to target the hip and flexor muscles. He recommends that high school players perform each strength for at least 30 seconds on both hips.
Stretch 1: While on one knee, slowly bend your front knee as far as you can and then reach both arms overhead. You should feel the stretch in the front of your right hip (as pictured). Avoid arching your lower back but focus instead on letting the right hip move forward.
Stretch 2: In this variation, allow your arm to reach over your head while sliding your hips out to the side. Feel the stretch in the “front/side pocket” area of your hip.
Stretch 3: In the same starting position, rotate your arms across your body. This will allow for the rotational component of the hip flexors to be targeted.
Stretch 4: While kneeling, place your other leg out to the side but keep your torso from rotating. Then place your left hand on the inside of your left knee in order to prevent the knee from translating forward. Move your hips forward and back, this will require you to bend at your hip joints. Feel the stretch at the inside of your left leg.
Stretch 5: In this version of the hip adductor muscle stretch, continue to hold the inside of the left knee while gliding your hips from side to side. You will feel the stretch on the lower part of your left thigh.
Stretch 6: Setup as you did in the previous two stretches but in this stretch, rotate your pelvis in clockwise and counter-clockwise motions (small circles). Be sure to minimize your thigh movements as you hold the inside of your left knee.
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