What to know about hip dips

Not happy with your ‘hip dips’? Here’s what to consider about these (very natural) curves.

While you may have never heard of hip dips – also known as “violin hips” – the topic sparks plenty of conversation with 29,000 (and counting) #hipdips posts on Instagram alone.

Are hip dips really anything to worry about, or just a very normal part of the body?

What are hip dips?

Personal trainer Esther Hesse says hip dips, or their scientific name, trochanteric depression, are an indentation in the space between your ilium (hip) and your femur (upper thigh).

“It can be more visible on people depending on the structure of their pelvis and how their body stores fat in that area,” she says.

Esther says while we can’t change the structure of our pelvis, we can change our body composition through a balanced diet and exercise.  

Are hip dips worth worrying about?

Shelley Lask, of Body Positive Health & Fitness, says body diversity, including hip dips, should be embraced rather than seen as something to be fixed.

“Companies that profit from and prop up diet culture are forever inventing ‘problems’ with our bodies for us to feel insecure about, so that we’ll buy what they’re selling,” she says.

“Every time there’s a new ‘problem area’ invented, it is a deliberate marketing strategy to knock us down a peg to sell us something.”

Can exercises help get rid of hip dips?

So they’re normal, but what if you still don’t like your hip dips?

If you are still concerned about hip dips, Esther recommends exercises that work the external rotators, especially gluteus minimus and gluteus medius exercises such as:

  • Curtsy lunges
  • Lateral lunges
  • Clams
  • Fire hydrants
  • Frog pumps

She also suggests sprinkling a couple of high-intensity workouts, such as interval training or a boxing class, throughout the week.

Trainer Ricardo Riskalla says a healthy diet and a solid exercise routine can make hip dips less noticeable for some people.

He recommends exercising the muscles around the hips, including the gluteus, quadriceps, hamstrings and core muscles.

His number one exercise for violin hips is plie squats.

He also suggests laying on your side and lifting one leg up and down slowly, or walking for at least an hour each day.

Still hate hip dips? Get creative with your wardrobe

Image consultant Imogen Lamport agrees hip dips are just a normal part of the body.

However she says many of her clients want to create a smoother line when they are dressing and, as with any part of the body, there are clever ways to dress if you want to accentuate certain features over others.

Imogen suggests avoiding lightweight fabrics, and opting for fabrics with a little weight, that “skim, but don’t cling”.

Dress pants made out of lightweight wool are likely to be flattering, as will a higher rise trouser or jean that fits well at the waistband, she says.

Peplum tops, flared skirts or dresses, blazers or longer-line cardigans are other wardrobe items to consider.

Written by Larissa Ham.