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Fire Hydrant Exercise – How to Perform to Get the Best Results

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Fire Hydrant Exercise

We consider fire hydrants a kind of exercise that uses body weight to strengthen muscles. These mainly work using the hip complex and the gluteus maximus. However, bringing some variations in this exercise will target the core as well. These hydrants will sculpt your gluteus maximus and strengthen the hip complex when you do this exercise regularly. In addition, it will also lower your risk of injury and back pain.

Here are some things you need to understand about the fire hydrant exercise. Also, you will see how to do the movement, the best forms of exercise, and the variations you can bring into it.

How do you perform the fire hydrant exercise correctly?

It is vital to use the correct form and technique for this exercise. To get the most from the fire hydrant exercise, you can use this technique. As a fire hydrant is a bodyweight activity, you wouldn’t need any special equipment. You will only require a mat. We call it the fire hydrant because the exercise reminds of a dog peeing on a fire hydrant. You guessed it; you do not play the role of the fire hydrant but that of the dog.

  • Start by getting down on all fours like a dog.
  • Make sure the palm of your hands, knees, and toes touch the mat.
  • Also, keep the hips above the knees. Constrict your core as you look down.
  • Keep the arms straight, and your elbows lock.
  • Now lift your right leg away from your body to a 90-degree angle
  • For beginners, do a 45-degree angle
  • Be sure to keep your knees at a right angle
  • Lower the leg to the initial position for completing one rep
  • Do at least three sets of 10 repetitions
  • Do the same with the left leg.

The best form for the fire hydrant exercise

 

How to perform the fire hydrant exercise

Keep the pelvis and core stable. You only have to move your hips. Doing otherwise, your glutes and hips will not activate properly. As you lift your leg, try pointing your foot to the opposite support, i.e., the wall. Resultantly, keep your abdominal and core muscles tight during the entire exercise.

Keep your spine neutral, neither hunched nor arched. You need to keep a balance in your left and right hands and make sure not to lean over to either side. Also, keep your elbows straight. As you lift your leg, don’t sway your hips or torso towards the side. This movement should originate from the hips, and you need to use your butt as you move. Controlled and slow movements work the best. Always pause to activate and squeeze your glutes.

Variations of the fire hydrant exercise

a) Fire Hydrant Exercise with Resistance Bands

Fire hydrant exercise is also doable with resistance bands around your legs. This band will keep your thighs and your hips working together against the force. Also, you need to wear the band above your knees and perform fire hydrants as you would do.

b) Fire hydrant exercise with ankle weights

You will need to challenge your legs and glutes using ankle weights to work harder. Start using a low weight if you haven’t done it before. You may increase the weights as you go. Do the fire hydrant exercise as usual after putting on the ankle weights.

c) Fire hydrant exercise kick

You can intensify the move using a kick to a fire hydrant. It will help you in strengthening the hip muscles’ sides. This is how you can do it.

  1. You can straighten your knee to extend your entire leg. Go back to 90 degrees and then lower the leg for finishing one rep.
  2. As you kick, you need to keep your leg straight. It will help you work the glutes.

d) Fire hydrant exercise with pulse

You can also add pulses to change the fire hydrants

  1. Pulse for about three to five times as you lift your leg
  2. Now, lower the leg for completing one rep
  3. When you get strong with practice, you need to increase your pulse number.

e) Standing fire hydrant exercise

Standing fire hydrant exercise helps to strengthen the hips, core, and glutes, just like standard fire hydrant exercises. These involve some hip activities. It will not increase the pressure on your waists. Therefore, it is perfect for people who have discomfort or wrist pain.

  1. Place your hands on the posterior side of your chair
  2. Stand with the legs apart a hip-width and bend your left leg to perpendicular angles
  3. Lean your core in front of you and squeeze the core
  4. Lift the leg to an angle of 45 degrees and don’t move any other body part
  5. Lower the leg to the initial position for completing one rep
  6. Complete three sets of at least ten reps and repeat the same with the other leg
  7. Place a resistance band over the legs for intensifying the move.

Most common mistakes made while performing the fire hydrant exercise

A common mistake people make is leaning over or twisting their torso as they lift their legs to a high degree. It is pervasive in relatively flexible individuals. Keep the balanced pressure on the left and right hands. Try keeping the torso and the hips as stable as they can get. Also, try isolating the movement to just a single leg.

Don’t try bending at the elbow to twist the torso for counteracting the below-average flexibility of the hips. Instead, keep your elbows locked out, and try making your arms straight. If you have lesser extension and flexion, focus on moving your leg as high as possible. Also, with time, you will improve.

Muscles the fire hydrant exercise helps

The fire hydrant exercise targets your hip muscles. However, this exercise is also helpful for strengthening your core and abdominal muscles. You can improve hip extension, external hip rotation, and hip abduction. Also, you can use variations of the exercise to target your thigh muscles as well. You can do so with the help of resistance bands and pulse, as we have discussed earlier in this article.

Final Word

This is all you need to know about the basics of fire hydrant exercise. It is a perfect exercise for improving the strength and tone of your muscles in the leg, butt, and core. Finally, for the best results, combine isometric exercises with cardio and resistance training.

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