A mobility expert says this is the one move he "would do every day" to open up tight hips and loosen a stiff spine

"If you’re looking for a great way to get your knees warmed up, open up your tight hips and loosen your stiff spine before training, this move is for you"

A man sitting on a yoga mat
(Image credit: Getty Images / Westend61)

If, like me, you spend a lot of your day sitting at a desk, it’s likely your hips and spine sometimes feel tight.

Working from home, I like to combat this by sprinkling in some stretches throughout my day—and this week I’ve found a new favorite. 

This move is a mixture of squat-to-stand and deep squat rotation stretches and comes from strength coach and mobility guru Seth Crowell

He recommends trying 10 repetitions as part of your next pre-exercise warm-up, or using it as a quick way to break up your 9-5.  

How to do Seth Crowell’s mobility move

By combining two moves into one flowing sequence, Crowell’s move works multiple joints including your hips, shoulders, knees, and spine through a wide range of motion. 

I tried the move myself and found it opened my hips as I sank into the initial squat position, then delivered a deep hamstring stretch when I straightened my legs. The squat rotation also offered an enjoyable spine stretch as I twisted to reach upwards, loosening up my tight shoulders. 

It did highlight my lacking ankle mobility though—my heels would peel off the ground when I extended the opposite arm skywards. So that's something I need to work on!

Benefits of mobility training

Mobility is, in the words of the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM), "the ability to move freely and easily". 

Maintaining your mobility will keep your body fit and functional, leaving you capable of tackling both every day and exercise-related tasks. 

This is precisely what mobility training is designed to do; working limbs through their full range of motion to maintain and improve the function of the related joint.

It teaches your muscles and other connective tissues how to use a joint effectively, boosting your coordination and allowing you to better control your movements. 

Looking for more ways to stay limber? Try doing these hip stretches and hip-strengthening exercises throughout your day. 

Harry Bullmore
Fitness Writer

Harry Bullmore is a Fitness Writer for Fit&Well and its sister site Coach, covering accessible home workouts, strength training session, and yoga routines. He joined the team from Hearst, where he reviewed products for Men's Health, Women's Health, and Runner's World. He is passionate about the physical and mental benefits of exercise, and splits his time between weightlifting, CrossFit, and gymnastics, which he does to build strength, boost his wellbeing, and have fun.

Harry is a NCTJ-qualified journalist, and has written for Vice, Learning Disability Today, and The Argus, where he was a crime, politics, and sports reporter for several UK regional and national newspapers.