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Home Health Fitness Hip Extension: Facts, Muscles Used, Benefits, and More

Hip Extension: Facts, Muscles Used, Benefits, and More

Hip extension exercise is significant in workouts, whether exercising for sports, losing those extra kilos, or just maintaining your shape. A sedentary lifestyle contributes to injuries and muscle inflammation.

Wrong and over-straining workouts can also cause injury. You should know how to work out your hips correctly without unnecessary strain.

This article will look at what you need to know about hip extension exercises, their benefits, and different workouts to do the job.

What Is Hip Extension?

It is the movement of the thigh away from the front pelvis. Whenever you open your hip joint, hip extension happens. This is due to the increased angle between the front of your hip and the front of the pelvis. In fact, whenever your leg travels behind you or while standing, you are in a hip extension pose.

The activity uses some of your strongest muscles which help in your daily movement. Hip extension is also a source of more power in sports and exercises. Activities like jumping, running, and swimming all extend the hip.

There are two movements of the hip:

Hip Extension

It occurs when you move your hip backward; for example, when running, the backward movement utilizes the hip extensors.

Hip Flexion

It occurs when the hip moves forward, the angle between the thigh and the pelvis decreases; for example, people who work for an extended time while sitting tend to have tighter hip flexors muscles.

Muscles Your Work Out In Hip Extension Exercises

The stability of the pelvis and movement while performing daily activities rely on how good your muscles are.

Hip extension exercise strengthens the following muscles:

Gluteus Maximus

They are the largest and the strongest muscles in your lower body. Gluteus Maximus comes in aid when standing up. The muscle is the round shape of your buttocks and helps in the hip and thigh movement.

In your daily life, activities like walking, squatting, and standing require strong Gluteus Maximus. The muscle is the Gluteal group which also consists of the Gluteus Medius responsible for hip extension.

Adductor Magnus

The muscle plays an essential role during the flexing of the hip. When extending the hip, Adductor Magnus varies in length depending on the angle of the hip.


The muscles on the back of your thigh are the Hamstrings. They include semimembranosus, semitendinosus, and bicep femoris.

The muscle connects the pelvis through the thigh to the back of the knee. Hamstrings help in bending the knee. For the hip, Hamstrings assist Gluteus Maximus in the backward movement.

Why Hip Extension Exercises Are Good For You

The hip extensors and flexors have to work together to maintain a neutral pelvis and have that powerful and safe motion through the hip.

Naturally, you use hip extension movements in daily life. However, these are not enough to strengthen your glutes and hamstrings.

How You Will Benefit From Hip Extension Exercises

Most exercises undermine workouts on hip extension. Proper activities and movements on the hip extensors are beneficial in the following ways.


Regular and proper workouts on your glutes and hamstrings will help to boost performance. The two muscles are essential in every sport.

Strong muscles help an athlete in sports conditioning. They will help minimize injury and also increase flexibility. For example, hip extensors and flexors have a direct impact during running and swimming. These two activities require hip movements using flexors and extensors.


Hip extension and hip flexion are both critical for the balance provision of your body. Working on hip extensors helps in maintaining your body balance and preventing injury.

Preventing injury

Lack of exercise, in general, leads to tightness and weakness of muscle. Inactive people have weaker gluteus maximus and hamstrings. This results in straining the lower back, causing lumbar spine injuries.

Toning muscles

Exercises will not only give you stronger glutes and hamstring muscles but as well tone them. You’ll have great-looking glutes and quads. When you work out regularly, you lose fat and also maintain the great shape of your legs.

What Types of Exercises Will Help Extend The Hip

Stability Ball Exercises

There are two modes of hip extension exercises you can do with a stability ball.

1. Prone Hip Exercise

This exercise will work on the lower body. You will be primarily working out your glutes and hamstrings.

How to do it

  1. Lay on a ball with your stomach, and the legs hang off at the back. Ensure your hands are touching the ground.
  2. With your glutes and lower back, push your legs up as far as possible. Ensure that you don’t leave the ball and your hands are on the ground at all times.
  3. Lower back to the original position slowly.
  4. Do the activity in sets and repeat several times.

2. Leg Curl

The second way when using a stability ball is the leg curl. This is a move for people whose bodies are already familiar with exercises. We recommend you start the earlier version or first engage in other forms of hip extension exercises.

How to do it

  1. Place your back on the ball, bend your knees and touch the floor with your feet. Place both your hand with palms on your sides.
  2. Now you need your lower back and hamstrings. Using them, lift off your butt from the ground into a straight position from your feet to the upper back.
  3. While in this position, pull the stability ball toward your butt. You will be performing a leg curl.
  4. Lower your butt slowly to the ground and repeat the procedure.

3. Donkey kick

You will need a mat. Pay attention to your hamstrings and glutes while doing this workout. If you use the procedure well, you will reap a lot from it.

Ho to do it:

  1. The starting position for this exercise is kneeling and placing your hands on the floor. Avoid spreading your knees much. At least maintain them at a distance of your shoulder length.
  2. The neck should be in a neutral position and hands under your shoulders.
  3. While using the glute, try to aim your foot up towards the ceiling while the sole remaining flat.
  4. Extend the hip while maintaining 90 degrees at the knee. Your foot should be in a flat position aiming at the ceiling. While working out, avoid bending the pelvis. Let it match the ground you are working on.
  5. We recommend you do this in sets of 3 per leg and repeat around 8 times on each leg.

If starting for the first time, go slow and don’t strain yourself. When you start feeling comfortable, increase the reps. You can also add weights to your ankles.

Standing Hip Extensions

It is the simplest of all. You don’t require to purchase any gym equipment when doing standing hip extension exercises.

You just need to hold onto something stable like a chair or a wall. While holding on to it, start moving your leg backward. Ensure your upper body remains straight throughout.

You can do the hip extension exercise from anywhere.

Pilates Swimming

If you are already in Yoga and Pilates, then you know various body movements for great workouts.

Pilate swimming involves lying on the floor while facing down and fluttering kicks backward.

Other Pilates exercises that focus on hip and hip joint include:

  • Bicycle
  • Leg pull front
  • Butt firming exercises
  • Sidekick series

Using A Gym Hip Extension Machine

If you already have a gym membership, try working out on the machine. A machine is a great option since you can adjust weights and your position while exercising.

The Bottom Line

It would help if you did hip extension exercises regularly as your hips are our prime movers. Focus on exercises that not only strengthen hip muscle but are safe on the hip joints.

Regular exercises that focus on the hip will also help you increase your competitiveness in sports. Remember, you require these hip muscles when doing even the simplest activities. Walking, climbing stairs, or even getting up from a squat require strong hip muscles.

Feel free to comment or suggest another exercise you think we should discuss. If you have any questions, leave a comment below.



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