Low Back Pain and Hip Hinges, how do they go together?
Updated: Apr 12
The Hip Hinge is the most important movement to master when treating low back pain. By keeping movement at our hips and center of gravity over our weight bearing joints we protect our low back from early wear and tear.
At the clinic we like to incorporate the hip hinge exercise into our training programs to not only understand the movement so we use it when we consciously think about it, but that we make it an automatic movement for our bodies. Through repetition and progressively challenging variations of the hinge, we start to ingrain the movement into the human movement pattern.
We will progress you through 10 progressions of the hip hinge we like to incorporate in the clinic.
1. Hero Squats
Hero Squats are a good place to start with those who are having trouble controlling the movement at the hips. By taking the
knees out of the equation patients are forced to hinge at the hips
2. The Butt Tap
Progressing to a standing position, butt taps are great to get the hips moving. In the clinic we like to utilize the wall as a cue and "reaching" back with your hips is a great way to teach you how to keep your center of gravity over your weight bearing joints.
3. Three Point Contact Hinge
Once the concept of unlocking the hips is achieved, we need to progress to keeping the back straight. Utilizing a stick, golf club, PVC pipe we can contact the pelvis, mid back, and the head throughout the entire movement. This helps keep the spine neutral when going through the motion.
4. Banded Hip Hinge
Now that we have perfected unlocking the hips and keeping the spine in a neutral position, we are adding resistance to the hip hinge is a great way to progress and continue to program the hip hinging pattern.
5. Weighted Hip Hinge
Incorporating heavier weights and using something free standing we can start to do more functional movements such as lifting. You'll feel this in the hamstrings, but do not fear this move! We are supposed to move and we do this movement daily!
6. Kettlebell Lift
Another variation that we can utilize here that makes the move more practical in everyday life. Unlock the hips, neutral spine, hinge back until you feel the hamstrings tighten up and then bend at the knees to lower down. Great way to teach proper lifting technique and movement pattern.
7. Hinge to Squat
With you becoming a master at the hip hinge we continue to progress. Arms up, push the hips back, and slowly lower into your squat pattern. This variation teaches us that the hip hinge can be a starter to several other key functional movement patterns such as the squat.
8. Banded Pull Throughs
With the hip hinge performed, it is time to transition to generating power with the hips for more athletic activities. Banded Pull Throughs are a great tool to safely train the hip hinge pattern while building strength in the hips.
9. Kettlebell Swing
When done correctly, the KB swing helps further engrain the hip hinge pattern while also teaching our bodies how to generate power from the hips. Lifting the weight involves shooting the hips forward while catching the weight should be done in a perfect hinge position.
10. Kettlebell Cleans
The clean uses a plethora of movement patterns that are utilized in everyday activities which include - hip hinge, lift, hip thrust, and full squat. Mastering this shows a full understanding of movement patterns and mobility/stability of your body
We hope with the last 10 days you became #betterthanbefore and learned some movements you can incorporate into your everyday life because if you are alive, you are an athlete! Every activity you do is an athletic event!