This 10 minute mobility routine preps your entire body for any workout

You'll be able to move and execute exercises with better form once you've done these nine movements

Man doing squat with rotation
(Image credit: Shutterstock)

Whether you want to squat deeper, run faster, jump higher, or push more weight, you need to prioritise mobility. You’ve probably heard lots of people bang on about the M-word but, when it comes down to it, do you actually know what you’re doing, or are you there scratching your head? If it's the latter, then this nine-move mobility routine is perfect for doing a couple of times a week and it’ll only take you 10 minutes. 

Mobility isn’t just about improving your athletic performance though, it’s also key to preventing injury. If your body is stiff and cannot get into a position required for a particular exercise, or move freely whilst playing a sport, then you’re increasing the likelihood of injuring yourself. This mobility routine targets your entire body, from your shoulders, to your hamstrings, hip flexors and even your ankles, helping your body move through its full range of motion and you can perform better.

Couch stretch

Man doing couch stretch

(Image credit: Shutterstock)
  • Targets: hip flexors, quads, groin
  • Time: 45 seconds each side

If you’re at home grab a small pillow, if you’re at the gym then grab an exercise mat. Place your shin against the wall and then stride your other foot forward. Tuck your pelvis under and push your hips forwards. Hold here for a couple of seconds, then return to the starting position and repeat for the time above.

Incline pigeon stretch

Woman doing pigeon pose

(Image credit: Getty Images)
  • Targets: hip flexors, glutes, piriformis
  • Time: 45 seconds each side

You’ll need a weight bench for these mobility exercises. However, if you’re doing it at home, then you can perform the classic floor pigeon stretch instead. Set your weight bench to a low incline and lie your shin on the back part of the bench. Stretch your other leg out behind you and lower your knee to the floor (like you would do for a lunge). Hold here for the time above, then swap sides. 

90/90 wipers with a lift

Man doing hip mobility exercise

(Image credit: Getty Images)
  • Targets: Hip flexors, glutes, piriformis
  • Time: 45 seconds both sides

Sit on the floor with both knees bent in front of you, about hip width apart. You then want to drop your knees to one side, maintaining a 90 degree angle with the front and back knee. If you can get your back knee to touch the floor (if you can’t don’t worry, hold it there), you then want to try and raise that foot, whilst keeping your knee glued to the floor. It won’t move much, but lift and lower it for the time above, then swap sides.  

Box ankle mobilisation

Woman doing step ups onto a box

(Image credit: Getty Images)
  • Targets: ankles
  • Time: 45 seconds each side

Place your foot up onto a box, hold onto the sides of the box and push your knee forward as far as it will go, without lifting your heel. Your other leg will remain on the floor, slightly bent behind you. Hold here for five seconds, before easing off and then going into it again. Repeat this for the time above, then swap sides.

Bar hangs

Woman doing bar hangs

(Image credit: Getty Images)
  • Targets: shoulders, thoracic spine, lats
  • Time: 45 seconds 

Head to a squat rack or pull up bar for this exercise. Hold onto the bar with a pronated grip (palms away from the face) or neutral grip (palms facing each other) and hold here for the time above. If you struggle to do it for the entire time, break it up into small chunks, or use a resistance band to help you.

World’s greatest stretch with rotation

T3 Active Writer doing mobility exercise (lizard stretch)

(Image credit: Future)
  • Targets: hamstrings, glutes, hip flexors, quadriceps, calves, shoulders, pecs, back
  • Time: Alternate on each side for 60 seconds

Start in a push up position, then lunge your right leg forward as close as you can to your right hand (try and keep your other leg as lengthened as possible). Lower your right elbow to the ground as far as you can go, then rotate that arm and reach it up towards the ceiling looking at your hand as you do so. Hold here for a second, then bring it back down, placing your hand back on the floor so you can swap and repeat this on the other side.

Neck rotations

Man doing neck rotations

(Image credit: Getty Images)
  • Target: Neck, shoulders
  • Time: 20 seconds

You can do this either in a kneeling position, sitting on a chair or even standing. Clasp your hands behind your back, pull your shoulders down and back, then slowly move your neck around in a circular motion. Do this for the time above in one direction, then repeat in the other direction.

Cossack squat

T3 Active writer doing cossack squat

(Image credit: Future)
  • Target: Inner thighs, hamstrings, hips
  • Time: Alternate sides for 60 seconds

While standing, take your feet into a wide stance. Lower yourself down to one side, bending your knee and keeping the opposite leg straight. You also want to flex the foot of the straight leg towards the ceiling. Hold for a couple of seconds, then return to a standing position and repeat on the other side. Keep doing this continuously for the time above. If you struggle, hold onto the side of a squat rack for extra balance and support to perform it.

Goblet kang squat

Woman performing goblet squat

(Image credit: Shutterstock)
  • Target: hips, knees, ankles, hamstrings, quads, glutes, core
  • Time: 60 seconds

Grab a kettlebell (or dumbbell), hold it close to your chest and have your feet just a little wider than hip-width apart. With a slight bend in the knees, hinge at the hips, just like you’re performing a RDL. Then, from here, lower yourself into a squat position. Hold here for three to five seconds. You then want to reverse the movement, by lifting your bum back into that hinge RDL position and then standing up straight. Do this at a moderate tempo for the time above.

Bryony Firth-Bernard
Staff Writer, Active

Bryony’s T3’s official ‘gym-bunny’ and Active Staff Writer, covering all things fitness. In her spare time, you will find her in her natural habitat - the gym - where her style of training is a hybrid of bodybuilding and powerlifting. Bryony loves writing about accessible workouts, nutrition and testing innovative fitness products that help you reach your fitness goals and take your training to the next level.