Ever feel tense, restless, or uncomfortable in your hip area? Well, this college yogi does for sure. In fact, I’m feeling it right now, thanks to long car rides to and from my future grad school residence (Holla Wolfpack!) over the weekend.
Seriously, college kids, flexibility in the hips plays a major role in releasing emotions. Emotions that if ignored and suppressed, manifest themselves in weight gain, poor school performance, fitful sleep, and strained relationships.
Do stuff like this:
To avoid this:
Our hips particularly hold a lot of emotion because they are such major, stablizing parts of our body. When we work with our hips in yoga, we often feel physical sensations that coincide with the emotions stored in that area. The mind/body connection just cannot be denied.
Check out the kinds of emotions that we can physically access with hip-opening poses (Source):
Unexpressed feelings are stored inside the body, causing obstruction in the circulation of energy, blood and fluids and, in turn, creates a sensation of pain. Anger is an example of one commonly unexpressed emotion that becomes filed away in the hips. Anger and resentment are not socially acceptable emotions in many western cultures, so instead of sharing or channeling their anger, people may push the feeling inside. When this repressed emotion becomes stored in the hips it may cause physical pain or a feeling of tightness. However, finding a method of releasing anger, such as yoga, will bring relief to those holding onto these feelings.
Setting expectations for yourself is a natural, healthy part of living, but sometimes these expectations can take control of your life. For example, you can store disappointment over unfulfilled expectations in your hips, as well as stress over impossible goals. These disappointments can potentially lead to feelings of self-doubt. The gallbladder meridian used in acupuncture travels along the sides of the body, through the hip; feelings of doubt can weaken this meridian. Self-doubt often serves as a diagnostic tool for gallbladder meridian imbalances.
Unexpressed sadness can also enter the hips. A person carrying this emotional burden may not even be aware of the sadness and only feel a climax of emotion when stretching or releasing the hips. People collect sadness when they do not allow themselves to grieve traumatic events such as losing.
The hips are home to the second chakra, or splenic chakra, one of seven that run the length of the torso to the top of the head. The second chakra’s energy is associated with sexuality and creative life force. When the energy of this chakra becomes blocked, a person may experience issues with intimacy, sex or creative blockage.