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Hip to Be Square

The hip adductors create stability in inversions and arm balances as well as in standing poses. Here's a primer on these little-known muscles.

By Julie Gudmestad

Whichever poses you are working on to lengthen your adductors, give the stretching plenty of time. I like to spend a minimum of one to two minutes in any asana of this sort. As you work patiently, it helps to visualize your adductors, inviting them to let go with each exhalation. Remember, these are big and potentially strong muscles, and they need plenty of time to relax deeply. They will also probably need months of regular stretching to change their length. But eventually, a well-rounded yoga practice that includes both strengthening and stretching your adductors will mold healthy muscles that are both powerful enough to do their job and flexible enough to allow you to move freely.

A licensed physical therapist and certified Iyengar Yoga teacher, Julie Gudmestad runs a private physical therapy practice and yoga studio in Portland, Oregon. She regrets that she cannot respond to inquiries requesting personal health advice.



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