Clams or clamshells activate the gluteus medius and hip lateral rotator muscles, which are extremely important for pelvic stabilization and hip mobility.

Set up

Lie on your side with your knees bent and your head resting on your arm. You may choose to use a pillow for increased neck comfort.

Oftentimes when doing this exercise, people place their knees too close to their chest. Instead, your heels should be in line with your glutes.

Make sure your spine is in a neutral position - not overly arched or flattened.  Use your core muscles to elongate through your torso and ensure there is a little bit of space between your armpit and your pelvis so that you’re staying nice and long through your top side. Ants should be able to march underneath your side. 

Ensure that your shoulders are stacked, ribs are stacked, hips are stacked, knees are stacked, and feet are stacked.


Now that you’re in the correct position, lift your top knee up as far as you can without letting your pelvis rotate backward. Slowly lower your knee back down to the starting position. Keep your feet together throughout the exercise.

You should feel this working in the outer hip of your top leg.


  • Go nice and slow. Stay controlled.
  • Make sure, as you’re lifting your knee up, that the hip doesn’t move back with it. You can put your hand on your hip to make sure it stays still.
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