There are many types of thigh stretches. They are useful both before and after exercising for preventing injuries and increasing flexibility. The primary muscles of the thighs that people regularly stretch include the hamstrings, the groin muscles, and the quadriceps. Some people stretch the hip flexors as well, as they are critical when lifting the thighs. An individual may perform specific thigh stretches to stretch each of these muscle groups.
Thigh stretches that focus on the hamstrings stretch the muscles in the back of the thigh, which help a person to bend his knee. One type of hamstring stretch requires the person to sit with his legs extended straight out in front of him. He then bends at the hips and reaches forward with his arms. He should extend his arms and reach out as far as he can, remaining in that position for about 10 seconds. He should then return to his starting position and repeat the stretch again.
Thigh stretches that focus on the groin muscles are useful for stretching the inner thighs. These muscles are important for allowing the thighs to move close to each other. One procedure for stretching these muscles requires the person to sit with his legs positioned far apart from each other. Keeping the knees and back straight, the person should bend forward from the hips and stay in that position for about 10 seconds. The bending motion should be accomplished using the hips, not the waist.
The quadriceps are located at the front of a person's thighs. To stretch the quadriceps, an individual may stand up and find a stable chair to hold. While holding onto the chair, he lifts one leg backward, holding his ankle with the hand closest to it and bending the knee. He then uses his hand to gently help the knee to move back as far as it can, remaining in this position for about 10 seconds.
The hip flexor muscles, sometimes referred to as thigh flexor muscles, are located in front of the hips. They are responsible for moving a person’s hips forward when he walks or runs and helping him to lift his thighs up toward his abdomen. To perform a simple hip flexor stretch, an individual may kneel on the floor and move one foot forward, so only one knee is left on the floor. Then, putting a hand on the thigh of the leg that is in the forward position, he should slide the other leg backward. The person should stop when he feels a stretching sensation in his hip, and hold the position for 10 seconds.