If you are suffering from leg pain and looking for relief and health, proper stretches can make all the difference. Fortunately, there are a few effective stretches that can give you instant relief of leg pain while helping promote overall leg health. These five easy stretches, combined with an appropriate exercise routine, can help combat leg and hip discomfort and improve your mobility.
1. Sitting Straddle Stretch
The Sitting Straddle Stretch is an easy way to lengthen and relieve tension in hips and inner thighs. To perform this stretch, start by sitting on a flat surface. Stretch your legs out and spread them apart as far as possible, keeping the inner edge of your feet on the surface, and your lower back against the ground. Make sure you are comfortable before you proceed with the exercise. Then, sit up straight with your arms extended in front of you and interlock your hands. Lean forward moving your chest towards your thighs while keeping your lower back and spine stretched. Hold this position for 30 seconds and release. Repeat 5 times.
2. Standing Quad Stretch
This is one of easiest yet effective exercises to help relieve hip and thigh soreness. To do it, start by standing straight while keeping your spine extended and your hips directly under your body. Then, slightly bend one knee and grab the ankle behind you with the same hand. Pull that ankle towards your buttocks and hold this position for about 30 seconds. Finally, relax and do the same for the other side.
3. Lying Gluteal Stretch
The Gluteal Stretch is best to target the muscles of your glutes and the back of your hips. Start by lying on your back with your legs fully extended. Now, gently pull one ankle to the opposite knee, keeping your other leg on the ground. Make sure to pull your knee close to your chest. Hold for 30 seconds and switch sides.
4. Seated Hamstring Stretch
The Seated Hamstring Stretch helps to relax the muscles at the back of your thighs. Begin by sitting with your legs extended and your feet flat on the ground. Gently bend forward, touch your toes with your fingertips and reach as far as you can while keeping your back straight. Hold this position for 30 seconds or as much as you can, and come back up.
5. Standing Calf Stretch
Finally, for a calf stretch you can do it anytime and anywhere. Stand facing a wall and place both hands on it. Step one foot back a few feet, keep the other one forward and slightly bent. Now, put all your weight onto this back leg, and keep your heel firmly planted on the ground. Press your hips forward while you bend the other knee and feel a stretch in the calf of your back leg. Hold this position for 30 seconds, and press your hips back again to increase the stretch. Switch legs and repeat.
By doing stretches such as those mentioned above, you can improve leg health and reduce pain. Remember to be careful and to always take it easy when stretching. Also, consult your doctor or a physical therapist for further advice.