6 Best Stretches For Sore Glutes

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November 15, 2019

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Your glutes make up the largest muscle group in your body, and you engage them during most exercises, whether you’re walking, squatting, climbing stairs or completing a  full-body workout. This complex muscle group plays an essential role in stabilising your pelvis, supporting your lower back and posture, giving power to your movements and reducing your risk of injury. 

Tight or sore glutes and hip flexors can be a common issue for people who work out regularly and those who spend a lot of time sitting down. Knowing some of the best glute stretches can help improve your mobility or ease any aches if you have delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) after a workout.

Stretches for tight or sore glutes usually target three large muscles — the gluteus maximus, gluteus medius and gluteus minimus. Some stretches also target the six smaller stabilising muscles like the piriformis, a muscle that helps with hip rotation. 

Glute stretches aren’t just for easing tightness or improving flexibility - they’re also a great way to improve your workouts. Neglecting tight muscles can mean you compromise your form, have limited mobility or engage the wrong muscles when you exercise, which increases your risk of injury. 

If stretching isn’t already part of your weekly routine, now is a good time to start!

How to stretch tight glutes 

Before doing static stretches (where you hold a stretch for 15-30 seconds), it’s best to start with some dynamic stretches or a few minutes of light cardio to warm up your muscles. Foam rolling is another great way to prepare your muscles to stretch, and you can include other movements to warm up your hips.

Exercises to ease sore glutes

Start with the clam kickout movement below, and then move on to the following stretches. If a stretch feels particularly tight, you may want to spend a bit more time in that position. If you notice tightness in your hips, try some hip flexor stretches, too!

Performing these exercises regularly can help relieve any stiffness in your glutes, improve your flexibility and boost your overall athletic performance.

Clam kickout

This exercise switches on your gluteus medius and other muscles in your leg. Perform the leg movements with control and think about engaging your abs at the same time - activating your core will help you to maintain good form and protect your spine. Complete the same number of repetitions on each side.

Once you’ve spent three to five minutes warming up your glutes and hips, you can start these stretches. Grab a yoga mat and let’s begin - you’ll be feeling more nimble in no time!

Seated figure four

This stretch increases flexibility of your gluteus maximus and your lateral hip rotators. You should feel the stretch in the glute and hip of your top leg. Not feeling a deep enough stretch? Try holding the back of your thigh and pulling your knee towards your face. 

Because you can deepen this stretch gently according to your range of motion, it’s a great stretch for anyone, regardless of your flexibility!

Seated twist

In this stretch, aim to keep your spine straight and use light pressure from your arms to stretch your glutes. 

Hold the stretch for 20-30 seconds before switching to the other side.

Half pigeon

The easiest way to get into this pose is to start in a high plank position, then bring one leg forward and keep your hips square as you lower towards the mat. 

This is a great stretch for several of your glute muscles, including the gluteus maximus, gluteus minimus, and the piriformis. It also helps to increase range of motion in the hip. If you’re flexible and not feeling much of a stretch, try leaning forward over your bent leg to rest your forearms on the ground.

Hold this pose for 20-40 seconds before repeating on the other side.

Standing glute stretch

This is the perfect stretch to perform if you’re outdoors and don’t want to sit on the ground! This stretch requires you to balance, so you might want to stand near something you can use for support like a tree or pole. 

During the stretch, keep a neutral spine and send your hips back, sitting deeper into the squat to deepen the stretch.

Reclining pigeon

This is a gentle stretch that opens up your hips and is a great place to start if you find it hard to get into half pigeon. Keep your lower back flat on the mat and gently guide your thigh towards your chest to feel the stretch. 

This supine stretch targets the piriformis and external hip rotators.

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Stretch and strengthen sore glutes to reduce tightness

If you have sore glutes from sitting or inactivity, activating your glutes before each workout and doing regular strength exercises can also help!

Muscle recovery is an important part of your training, so make it a priority! When you look after your body, you’ll get better results from your training, and you’ll feel better too. 

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* Disclaimer: This blog post is not intended to replace the advice of a medical professional. The above information should not be used to diagnose, treat, or prevent any disease or medical condition. Please consult your doctor before making any changes to your diet, sleep methods, daily activity, or fitness routine. Sweat assumes no responsibility for any personal injury or damage sustained by any recommendations, opinions, or advice given in this article.


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