There is A LOT of hip flexion and extension in yoga asana and in life. Sometimes, we can lose it. Some reasons for losing it are: habit, posture and injury (old or new) (foot, ankle or anywhere else really).
Here is a mini functional asana sequence we came up with to increase awareness and efficient movement around the hip and pelvis. It focuses on dissociating the ball and socket movement from the movement of the pelvis. Meaning, can you stabilize the pelvis (or hemi pelvis in this instance) so that you can get pure juicy hip flexion and extension within the hip (femoracetabular joint)? Because pure juicy hip flexion and extension IS SO IMPORTANT for power, efficient movement, & protection of joints up and down the chain.
Why? Pure hip movement oils the joint, hydrates the tissues, creates tensional load to strengthen the joint, helps explore end range length & load of the muscles that cross that joint (like the hamstrings) and can contribute to optimal arthokinematics (the specific roll and glide the ball does in the socket to accommodate the hip movements), and helps proprioception. When you hip hike for that last few degrees of hip flexion, you lose that torison across the posterior joint capsule, the pull at the most proximal hamstring, the stability in the deep core.
How? it starts with stabilizing the pelvis (read: minimize the pelvic hike and waddle walk). This is done with a combination of core stability (all parts of the core), awareness, breath, and stacking. Since the hip region is poorly represented in the motor cortex, using your hands to help bring awareness to focus on that ball-in-socket motion can help a ton.
The band creates upward resistance by design to emphasize ECCENTRIC hip flexion control. Can you keep that and centered in the socket while the femur goes upward? Backward, sideways Maybe? But its nice to think about while you try this.
We shared how these actions translate into yoga asana: tree, modified parivrtta hasta padangusthasana, and dancer's pose.
And then... how it is usable in functional movement like running.
Try it! Let us know how it goes.