The next thing that we do in our “What to do with inhibited glutes” series is our stretching protocol. This would be done right after foam rolling. Since the hip flexors are antagonistic to the glute max, we will continue to try and lengthen and relax these muscles.
If you have a partner to stretch you, or if you are the trainer/strength and conditioning coach, and your client needs to stretch their hip flexors, the modified Thomas Position is where to start. In our situation, if we are stretching before a training session or a practice, we will do the Active Isolated Method of stretching. If an athlete requests it, we will manually stretch them out on a table. We will also use the self-static stretch variation as well before and after practices and/or during workouts. During the AIS method, we are cueing our athlete to think about contracting the glute as we try to lengthen the hip flexors a little more each rep.
Thomas Position Hip Flexor A.I.S.
Thomas Position Hip Flexor + Rectus Femoris A.I.S.
Sometimes we will incorporate prone hip flexor stretching. I’ve found this one helpful for athletes who may have some back pain in conjunction with inhibited glutes. Like the modified Thomas Position stretch, we are cueing our athlete to contract the glute on the top of the movement.
Prone Hip Flexor + Rectus Femoris