The hip hinge is an important part of every fitness routine and every sport. If I had my way, hip hinges would be taught as soon as a child can run. The hips are one of our most mobile joints… unfortunately, most hips are stuck in sitting positions for a majority of the day. Thanks to evolution, our bodies are very good at finding a way to”make it work”, which puts extra pressure on the stabilizing joints at the other end of the muscular connection. They are the joints that will be compromised in order to compensate for the lack of hip mobility. Generally the lumbar spine (low back) will be the compensator, and then the knees will eventually take their fair share. 🙁

Understating and application  of a proper hip hinge will make for a healthier low back, stronger glutes and core, and because of all this, better posture. Hip hinges are the starting motions of many the exercises we do at Gumsaba. From deadlifts to squats to inchworm push ups and more, they are a foundational movement that deserve some serious attention.s o, lets get nitty gritty on the HIP HINGE!

NOTE:  A straight, lightweight pole, (think PVC, broom handle or even a bow staff like mine!) is a great tool for even the most advanced hinger to remind the body of its position in space. 

  1. Start standing with feet hip width apart. Grasp the pole with your right hand and place the pole behind your back, with your palm facing toward you, and that hand behind your neck. Reach your left arm out to the right, then internally rotate from the shoulder, bend the elbow and grasp the pole palm facing away from you, left hand will be in the natural curve of the low back.
  2. Feel the pole in contact with three points: the back of the head, the space between the shoulder blades and the sacrum. This contact must remain for the duration of the hip hinge. Once it is lost, the hip hinge is improper!
  3. Pull the shoulder blades together to open the space between the fronts of the shoulders.
  4. Engage the lower abdomen to encourage a neutral pelvic position.
  5. Firm the thighs and glutes.
  6. Keeping your form described in 3, 4 & 5, slowly hinge the hips back, keeping the shins vertical. The knees will bend to prevent over stretching the hamstrings but the knees will not travel forward or backward in space. Descend down to as much as a 45˙ angle. If the pole loses contact with any of the three points before you hit a 45˙,  you have gone too far for your current ability. Firm your belly at the bottom of the hinge.
  7. To ascend: mindfully re-engage the glutes and hamstrings and use them to shift the hips forward to standing.
  8. Repeat 10 proper hip hinges with the grasp as described in 1, then switch hands and repeat the steps.


Hip hinge to 45˙.

Gumsaba Fitness Class schedule Wednesday 2/24/16

5:30AM Sunrise Danville Womens only class – Coach Karen – Met Con Humpday

6AM Sunup Moraga Womens only Class – Coach Briana – All about that BASE.

8:15AM SunshineMoraga Womens only Class – Coach Briana – All about that BASE.

9AM Sunshine Walnut Creek Womens only class – Coach Jentry – Met Con Humpday

11:00AM Cytosport In Trinity Foundations – Coach Michelle (private class)

12:00PM Cytosport Next Level In Trinity – Coach Michelle (private class)

2PM Cytosport Hatha Yoga – Coach Michelle D. (private class)