Glute Stretches

Here are three great glute stretches which can help improve flexibility, relieve back, hip and knee pain and prevent injuries.

Tightness in the glutes often causes pain in the knee, hip or back by slightly altering the position of the leg, causing an uneven distribution of forces through the knee. It is also a common cause of back pain as it can lead to back stiffness.

You only need to do one or two of these glute stretches - pick whichever you prefer. To be most effective you need to: Hold the stretch for 30 seconds and repeat it 3 times.

If you haven't already read the knee stretches intro page, click the link for information on how to get the best results from glute stretches with the minimum effort. All the pictures show the right glutes muscles being stretched.

Top Three Glute Stretches

1) Pretzel Stretch

Glute stretches can be done in number of different ways.  Approved use by

Starting Position: Lie flat on your back and bend both knees. Cross one leg over the other so your foot is on the opposite knee

Action: Bring both knees towards your chest and gently pull the uncrossed leg towards you until you feel a stretch in your buttock. Hold for 30 secs

Repetition: Repeat 3 times, 2x daily, or before and after exercise

2) Twisting Buttock Stretch

Starting Position: Sit on the floor with one leg bent and the other straight.

Buttocks stretch.  Approved use by

Action: Turn your body towards the bent knee side until you feel a stretch in your buttocks. Hold for 30 secs

Repetition: Repeat 3 times, 2x daily, or before and after exercise

Progression: 1) Bend one knee and cross it over the other leg so your foot is by the inner side of other knee. Repeat the stretch.
2) Stretch the glutes further by anchoring your elbow round the bent knee and pulling the knee further over to the opposite side

3) Figure 4 Glute Stretch

This is a great way to stretch your glutes.  Approved use by

Starting Position: Sit in a chair and cross one leg so that the foot is resting on the other knee as shown.

Action: Gently lean forward until a stretch is felt in the buttock of the crossed leg. Hold for 30 secs

Repetition: Repeat 3 times, 2x daily, or before and after exercise

Progression: 1) Gently push down on your knee to increase the glutes stretch
2) Progress further by leaning towards the foot resting on your knee i.e. away from the side you are stretching

What Else Can Help?

To get the maximum benefit from these glutes stretches, see the knee stretches guide for top tips on getting the maximum benefit from the minimum effort.

It is also important to have good strength in your glutes to help avoid knee pain.  Most people I've treated with knee pain have weak glutes so it’s really important to strengthen them.  Visit the knee strengthening exercises section for simple exercises that will help.

If you suffer from knee pain and want help working out what the problem is, visit the knee pain diagnosis section.

Go to Knee Exercise Guide or Homepage

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See Also

Knee Braces: Would they help?

Test your flexibility - would stretching help you?

How can I strengthen my leg?

Common causes of knee pain

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