Powerful hip extension is the literal and figurative driving force of many of Crossfit’s 9 essential movements, olympic lifts, and other gymnastic movements such as pull ups. Generating a powerful kip for those chest-to-bars or performing a snatch that feels almost weightless on the platform are both indicators that you’re doing something right…using those hips! Great, now lets explore some options you can work on to further develop and improve hip extension.
The Kettlebell is a great piece of equipment, bringing body awareness to your hips and that powerful extension. The swing, and SDHP can be used as a warm up or sometimes as a fix for a slow power clean. Practicing a few sets of perfect kettbell swings with a big forward pop of the hips is an excellent way of developing strong hip drive that will translate into lots of other movements!
Squats/Squat Jumps are also used to accomplish the same objective: create strong hip extension. A fundamental air squat with a strong squeeze of the glutes at the very top is a simple way to build efficient neuromuscular patterns of powerful hip extension. Take it a step further by exploding out of an air squat, driving those hips forward and jumping your head through the ceiling. Perform a few sets almost daily and you’ll notice those olympic lifts getting quicker!
Kettlebell swings and squat jumps are two of the best exercises used for developing powerful hip extension. But don’t forget about pure hip extensions on the glute-ham developer which is another great way of building strong, powerful hips. Don’t hesitate to ask a floating coach to give you a quick tutorial on how to size yourself and use the equipment most effectively. Work these into your weekly routine along with those swings and squats and you’re on your way to quick, explosive hips! Don’t think I forgot about the mobility side of things. Rolling the top of the thigh or performing a lunge or wall stretch are perfect ways to loosen up the hips and allow for smoother hip extension.