The single leg bridge is an exercise that targets a group of muscles often referred to as the “glutes.” These are a group of muscles around the hips and butt that control the position of the legs when standing, walking, running, and jumping.
Having strong glutes is important to reduce stress on the knee and ankle joints and in order to safely perform both these movements and activities, and avoid pain. The single leg bridge is shown to effectively activate a combination of glute muscles, including gluteus maximus (the butt muscle) and gluteus medius (hip muscle).
The single leg bridge is performed by lying on the back with the knees bent. First, tighten your tummy so your core is engaged. Then, straighten one knee and squeeze the butt muscle to lift the hips up off the floor. The trunk should stay in a straight line and the knee should remain in line with the hip and ankle. Raise and lower slowly.
Perform just a couple at first to ensure that you are able to do these without pain or cramping. If you experience pain in the low back, or cramping behind the knee after just a couple repetitions, you may not be ready for this exercise. Begin with a regular bridge (see below) and progress to this.
If you would like to learn other exercises to strengthen the hips, or have any questions about the single leg bridge, call us at our Avon, Colorado clinic 970-949-9966 or our Eagle, Colorado clinic 970-328-5230.