Flexibility is one of the prime requirements of sportsmen for optimum performance. No matter whether you are playing tennis, soccer, swimming or running, lower body fitness is the main criteria. Flexible hips and toned lower body is the way to best performances in any field. Sportsmen usually have a planned workout routine which should necessarily include a number of lower body exercises for enhanced flexibility. These exercises help in reducing discomfort and are known to reduce the risk of injury during the performance.
Here Are 5 Lower Body Fitness And Flexibility Workouts For Sports
1. Open Lizard Exercise
This exercise tones the muscles located in front of hips. These muscles tend to become tight. This is an intense workout which targets the area and builds flexibility. Start in a lunge position. The right knee shall be forward. You can then slowly lower the left knee to floor. Keep your hands on the ground. They will be just under the shoulders.
You can lower the right knee towards your right. This will help to rest just on the outside of the right foot. The arms will be straight. This will press your chest muscles forward. This increases a stretch. Stay in this stretched position for at least 5 breaths. Repeat on the other side.
2. Frog Stretch
This is a great fitness workout for all sportsmen which works on the lower body effectively. It opens hip muscles, tones the lower abdominal region and helps to lose fat. Start by getting on your knees and hands. You will then slowly widen the knees. Move your knees as much as you can. Try and bring the feet in alignment with the knees. In this position, shins will be parallel.
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Now, you will flex the feet. Move yourself a bit forward in your forearms. You need to hold the stretch for a long period. You can also move the hips a bit backward and forward. This will help in working out your other parts of the lower body effectively. Include this in your every day workout routine.
3. Happy Baby
This is an easy exercise of the lower body which works in the abdominal region, hips, thighs and also stretches the lower back. Start by lying down completely flat. You will bend the knees. Try and get hold of your flexed feet just as a baby does. In this position, you arms shall be just outside the legs. You will use all your upper body might and press the knees to the ground and just below the armpit.However, you should try and keep your chest and shoulder muscles relaxed. Remain in this position for at least three to five breaths.
4. Supine Adductor
Muscles around the knees are prone to the most injuries not only during games but also during regular workout session. Specific lower body exercises help in improving the blood circulation around the area and reduce the chances of injuries like sprains. Start by lying on the back. The right knee shall be bent. Your foot will be flat on the floor. You need to slowly extend the left leg and move it towards the ceiling.
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Around the sole of your foot, you will wrap a strap. As you hold the ends with the left hand, slowly extend the right arm. Move it directly to the side so that you are able to anchor your body. Allow the left leg to fall slowly to your left as your right side is well grounded. You can hold on for 8 breaths or less as much as you can. Do the same movement on your other side.
5. Wide Squat
This is a relaxing exercise which improves flexibility in the lower body region and helps in quick movement. You need to stand straight as you keep your feet wide. Your hips shall be at least shoulder distance apart which will later help in stretching out the lower body muscles. From this position, you will start to slowly bend your knees. You will also move down close to the ground. In case your heels are not touching the floor, you can place a towel or a mat just under the heels.
This shall offer much-needed support. You will then bring the palms together at the center.You will be firm and press the elbows to the inside of the knees. This will help in opening your hips a bit further. Take five breaths. Relax and release your hands to the floor. Move them away from the feet. This will stretch your lower body and hip. Stay in this position for five seconds. You need to do this exercise every day especially if you are in tennis, badminton or soccer which requires quick movements.