Everyone understands that loading the glutes is important for hip & back health, as well as sports performance.
But do you load your hip flexors? Muscles in the body work as pairs (agonists & antagonists), with one accelerating a movement whilst the opposing muscle acts as a brake. Glutes are hip extensors, therefore the opposing muscle to the hip flexors (during hip flexion/extension).
Hip flexors get a bit of a bum deal – the thinking being that they’re a structure that is always tight & creating pain. However, improving their ability to produce force often improves this tight feeling as they handle daily activities without reaction. Additionally there are performance benefits to hip flexor strengthening for all athletes. These include a snappier first step, improved recovery mechanics in all runners which positively impacts run economy, & improved out of the saddle pedalling (including sprinting) for cyclists.
This bridge position with miniband hip flexor march is a great way of getting hip flexor load whilst bracing the trunk & recruiting the posterior chain on the opposite side, mimicking the muscle recruitment patterns seen during running.’