Hinging – Definition & Detailed Explanation – Functional Training Glossary

I. What is Hinging?

Hinging is a fundamental movement pattern that involves bending at the hips while keeping a neutral spine. This movement is commonly used in functional training to strengthen the posterior chain, which includes the muscles of the lower back, glutes, and hamstrings. Hinging is essential for performing everyday activities such as picking up objects from the ground, sitting down, and standing up.

II. Why is Hinging important in Functional Training?

Hinging is important in functional training because it helps improve overall strength, stability, and mobility. By strengthening the posterior chain, hinging can help prevent injuries, improve posture, and enhance athletic performance. Additionally, hinging movements are essential for developing power and explosiveness, making them crucial for activities such as sprinting, jumping, and lifting heavy objects.

III. How to perform a Hinge movement correctly?

To perform a hinge movement correctly, start by standing with your feet hip-width apart and your knees slightly bent. Engage your core muscles and push your hips back while keeping your chest up and your back straight. Lower your torso until you feel a stretch in your hamstrings, then drive your hips forward to return to the starting position. Make sure to maintain a neutral spine throughout the movement and avoid rounding your back.

IV. Common mistakes to avoid when Hinging

One common mistake when hinging is rounding the back, which can put excessive strain on the spine and increase the risk of injury. Another mistake is bending the knees too much, which shifts the focus away from the posterior chain and reduces the effectiveness of the movement. It is also important to avoid using momentum to complete the movement, as this can lead to compensations and decrease the activation of the target muscles.

V. Variations of Hinging exercises in Functional Training

There are several variations of hinging exercises that can be incorporated into a functional training routine. Some popular options include Romanian deadlifts, kettlebell swings, hip thrusts, and good mornings. Each variation targets slightly different muscles and movement patterns, providing a well-rounded approach to strengthening the posterior chain. It is important to choose the right variation based on your fitness level and goals.

VI. How to incorporate Hinging into a workout routine

To incorporate hinging into a workout routine, start by warming up with dynamic stretches and mobility exercises to prepare your body for the movements. Then, choose 2-3 hinging exercises and perform 3-4 sets of 8-12 repetitions with proper form. Make sure to rest between sets and listen to your body to avoid overtraining. You can also combine hinging exercises with other functional movements such as squats, lunges, and core exercises to create a well-rounded workout routine. Remember to progress gradually and challenge yourself while maintaining proper form to maximize the benefits of hinging in functional training.