It’s All in the Hips!

Doing squats to get BIG QUADS may be popular, but training the hip extension muscles is arguably more important. Whether we’re a 2 million year old hunter-gatherer, or a modern-day suburban soccer dad.

As sure we bend at the knees to lift, but it’s predominantly a waist bend.


Interestingly, as weights get heavier in knee-bending exercises like the squat, the hips are also more heavily recruited than the muscles of the knee. As if naturally our body calls in the big guns to handle the increased load.

For instance, take a look at the increase in the hip-extend to knee-bend ratio as weights get heavier in the squat (cudos to Chris Beardsley & Bret Contreras for the charts):

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An adjustment that’s also seen in the lunge and the traditional bent-knee deadlift:

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And during dynamic speed and power movements, to run faster and jump higher.

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Some have suggested that we look to the hips because they’re stronger. Which one could argue, provides reassurance that making and keeping them strong should be prioritized – using whatever movements, equipment, and progressions we feel comfortable with:

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Or simply put, we may not see our backsides, but clearly they’re worth developing.  Not only to maintain functional ability, but to continue driving maximal performance.

Stay Lean!
Coach Mike


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