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Hips are a major joint in the body, and a place where we store emotional as well as physical tension. We use yoga to create flexibility in our body and mind. Often it’s easy to focus on the body, because that is the most tangible. We see results in the mirror and feel the difference in our muscles.

If we are mindful, we can also observe the improvements in our mental and emotional lives. When we create physical flexibility in our hips, it creates a ripple effect of changes. Here are five ways a hip-opening yoga practice can change your life.

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Open those hips!

Open you to relationships

Your hips are where you store a lot of energy related to relationships. When they are open and flexible you have a more giving, relaxed attitude towards other people — whether family, romantic partners, or colleagues.

Open you to opportunities

Being tight in the hips can manifest in being closed to changes or new possibilities. Opening our hips can prevent us from fixating on things being a certain way so we can see and grasp opportunities to enrich our lives.

Open you to fun

It’s hard to feel playful when your taking stiff little steps. Opening your hips lets you stride, bound, frolic, dance. You literally loosen up and start having fun.

Open you to healing

You can store pain and trauma in your hips. For example, women who have given birth often struggle with hip pain because the body contracts and tries to protect the area. Gently working your hips helps you overcome pain and promotes natural healing.

Open you to the future

When we stand our hips face forward. If they are tight and closed, we are literally blocking forward movement. Releasing the tension in our hips gives us a much calmer, more open way to approach the future.

Reading to open up? Read 3 Hip Opening Yoga Poses and get practicing!

Questions about hip openers? Ask in the comments!