OptimizePMD: Sitting Hurts, Part II — Exercises to Strengthen Your Glutes
Sitting for extended periods of time is a surefire way to become uncomfortable. Maybe your back tightens, or your hamstrings and hips are slow to loosen. In this video, Greenville health coach Caiti Nascarella offers several stretches and exercises you can do to strengthen key muscles, including your glutes.
Watch the full 20-minute video below and read on for a recap. Check out Part I here.
(Having trouble getting the video to play? Get troubleshooting tips here.)
Why is strengthening your muscles important?
Stretching is just one part of this, as we covered in Part I. But strengthening is also very important. Over time, when your hip flexors get tight, it can change the alignment of your pelvis. This can cause an anterior pelvic tilt. When this occurs, other muscle groups, such as your core and your glutes, weaken. This leads to more compensation patterns, more muscle imbalances, and more aches and pains. If you can strengthen your muscles, you can help prevent any issues from developing.
5 Beginner-Friendly Exercises to Get Started Strengthening Your Glutes
1. Basic clam shell. Laying on your side, make sure your hip is in a stable, neutral position. Put your hand on your hip if necessary. Gently raise your knee up toward the ceiling. Slowly lower it back down.
2. Reverse clam shell. Stay in the same position as the basic clam shell. Instead of raising your k5nee, slowly raise your foot while keeping your knees locked together. You will feel this in your outer hips.
(Note: To make these more challenging, add a resistance band around your thighs or ankles.)
3. Lay on your side and bend your lower leg at a 45-degree angle. Grab a pillow and place it on top of the lower leg. Hold your top leg straight out with your foot pointed parallel to the ground. Lift your top leg straight up and slowly lower it back down, touching the pillow. Avoid rolling your posture forward the more you do this exercise.
4. Sit on the ground with your knees bent in front of you. Lay flat on your back and tilt your pelvis slightly. This is a good precursor to any bridge exercise.
5. Lay flat on your back. Place your hands flat on the ground on each side of your body. Do a pelvic tilt like the prior exercise, and then lift your hips. Hold the position at the top briefly before slowly lowering yourself back to the ground.
OptimizePMD is a new wellness program under development at PartnerMD. By emphasizing various exercise strategies and explaining the science behind them, OptimizePMD will help participants achieve and maintain optimal physical performance at all stages of life. Check out more OptimizePMD content here. More information coming soon!