The hip flexors are the group of muscles in your upper thigh near your pelvis. Weak hip flexors can cause pain in your hamstrings, knees and throughout your thigh. This weakness leads to muscular imbalance and a greater risk for injury. Sitting all day at a desk keeps the hip flexors shortened, which can contribute to tightness and pain. Reduce the risk for pain and injury by performing exercises and stretches that elongate and strengthen the area.
Lie on your back with your knees bent and your feet flat on the floor. Press your heels into the floor as you contract your abdominal muscles, and lift your bottom off of the floor until your torso and thigh are in a straight line. Hold for 10 seconds. Release and lower your bottom back down to the floor. Repeat for 10 to 12 repetitions.
Isometric Hip Flexor Hold
While standing, raise your right knee towards your chest until your upper thigh is parallel to the floor. Hold for 5 seconds. Place your hand on a wall or sturdy chair if you need help maintaining balance while standing on one leg. Return your right foot to the floor, and lift the left knee. Complete 10 to 12 repetitions on each leg.
Seated Knee Raises
Sit up straight in a chair. Use your hip flexor to raise your right knee, so your foot is 6 to 12 inches off the floor. Hold for 5 seconds. Lower your right foot back to the floor, and repeat with the left leg. Complete 10 to 12 repetitions on each leg.
Kneeling Lunge Stretch
With your right foot forward, move into a lunge position. Lower your left knee to rest on the floor. Your right knee should be directly over your right ankle. Rest your hands on your right thigh, and bend your right knee as you shift your weight forward until you feel a stretch in your left hip flexor. Hold for 20 seconds. Shift your weight back to the starting position, and repeat two more times before switching legs.