The Five-Minute Pain Fix

Weak hips are an often-overlooked causes of knee, back and ankle pain. Here's how to make it vanish

by Ginny Graves
hip exercises picture
Photograph: Brown Bird Design

If you’re rehabbing after an injury or experiencing lower-body pain that you think might be hip related, do these strengthening exercises daily for six weeks. To maintain strong hips, practice the moves twice a week after a workout, suggests physical therapist Reed Ferber, PhD. Doing them beforehand can fatigue the muscles, which increases your risk of injury.

Swinging Lifts (left)
Targets the gluteus medius (on the outside of the butt)

Stand with your right leg in front of your left leg. Loop the resistance band around your right ankle, keeping it taut. Slowly lift your right leg behind you and out to the side at a 45-degree angle for a count of two. Lower for a count of two. Keep your knee straight and feel your butt muscles engage. Repeat 10 times, then change legs. Work up to three sets on each side.

Side Lifts (above, right)
Targets the abductor hip muscles

Tie a resistance band around the leg of a heavy table. Stand with your right leg in front of your left leg. Loop the band around your right ankle, keeping it taut. Slowly lift your right leg to the side, away from your body, for a count of two. Lower for a count of two. Keep your knee straight throughout the movement. Repeat 10 times, then switch legs. Work your way up to three sets on each side.

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First Published Tue, 2012-01-31 14:49

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