Exercise of the week – The Clam
Fitness expert, Wendy MacLeod, shares her favourite exercise of the week, perfect for mums to try at home.
This week we are looking at the importance of a strong support structure in the hip and pelvis area. We do work the hips with other more functional type exercises such as squats and lunges but here we can achieve total isolation of this muscle group. This exercise is therefore great for anyone who has experienced any previous pelvic girdle, low back pain as it will assist in the stabilising of the hip area.
Muscles worked: Hips – Abductors
How to do it
Begin by lying on your side with your head in your hand for support and place you upper hand on the floor in front of you. Make sure your back/spine is in a neutral position and your legs should be approx. 45 degrees, with your feet together.
Holding your core strong, slowly raise your knee up to hip level (abduct) whilst keeping your feet/ankles joined. The work should all be coming from the hip area, hold for 2 counts and slowly return to start position. Do 2-3 sets of 12-15 reps and repeat on the other side.
Tips for good technique:
- Perform slowly and very controlled
- Don’t over raise your knee/outer thigh
- Don’t allow lumber (lower) back to curve
Who is it suitable for?
Most women even those who are earlier on post natal. However do be careful if you have had SPD in the past and are still breastfeeding as the ligaments in the pelvis may still be prone to stretching and injury.
Great for all women beyond the post natal period also as it continues to maintain good tone and strength in the hip area.