A Bodily Therapist Shares His Strategies for Fixing Tight Hip Flexors

One of the crucial analyzed muscle groups within the health universe are these three muscle groups in your higher thigh, the hip flexors. Are they weak, or are they tight? There’s a lot confusion about them, and a whole lot of blame will get laid on them concerning efficiency out and in of the gymnasium. With a Bodily Therapist’s assist, we’ll clear up some misconceptions. With Dr. Bo Babenko, PT, DPT, we’ll be taught the variations between weak and tight hip flexors and what to do if they’re a problem.

First, a little bit geeky anatomy and advantages of coaching the hip flexors.

The Anatomy of Hip Flexor Muscle mass

The hip flexor muscle groups are one of many connectors between the higher and decrease physique. It crosses the hip joint out of your decrease backbone to your interior thigh and is one in all your physique’s main decrease again stabilizers and hip flexors. The three muscle groups that make up the hip flexors are the iliacus, the psoas main, and the psoas minor.

Psoas Main And Minor: are lengthy, thick spindle muscle groups originating from the thoracic and lumbar space from T12-L4 lateral of the lumbar backbone and inserts on the femur through the iliopsoas tendon. Its actions are hip and trunk flexion, and it assists in lateral thigh rotation.

Iliacus: is a triangular-shaped muscle originating from the iliac fossa and the lateral side of the sacrum. It inserts on the lesser trochanter of the femur (leg bone), and its muscle fibers merge with lateral fibers of the psoas main to kind the iliopsoas (hip flexor) muscle. Its main features are hip and trunk flexion.

Muscular athlete stretching hamstring and a tight hip flexor in a yoga position

Advantages of Hip Flexors Workouts

You don’t typically suppose or really feel your hip flexors working, however anticipate these three advantages—with out serious about them—when they’re absolutely operational.

Improved Hip Mobility

Strengthening and mobilizing your hip flexors will permit you to entry your hip’s full vary of movement to boost all components of your leg workout routines, resulting in improved hip extension and juicier glute features.

Elevated Pace

In case your hip flexors are brief or weak, it can have an effect on your means to attain highly effective hip extension. Mainly, it might sluggish you down. The stronger and extra cell your hip flexors muscle groups are, the higher your means to drive off the bottom sooner.

Potential Discount In Low Again Ache

The hip flexor muscle groups are a main again stabilizer and a connector between the decrease and higher physique. A decent and weak hip flexor can pull the decrease again into additional lordosis (elevated curve), inflicting anterior pelvic tilt and making you extra liable to lower-back points.

Indicators of a Tight Hip Flexor

“The hip joint space is hard; we at all times need to clear the adjoining areas. The groin, hip joint, and decrease again all must be dominated out when there may be ache within the entrance of the hip. The commonest criticism with hip flexors is normally ache as you convey your leg up off the bottom like a excessive knee. This may be limiting your lunges, squats, and even operating.

One would additionally know if they’ve issue or overarching lumbar spines when coming into a lunge place, particularly with an upright torso,” explains Babenko.

3 Workouts To To Relieve a Tight Hip Flexor

“We have to make sure the size of the muscle is a matter earlier than programming any train. A real “tightness” restriction can be examined in a “Thomas place” (clinically talking, that is while you lay in your again and have one leg dangle down—in case your thigh bone doesn’t drop under parallel to the ground, we name {that a} tight hip flexor).

We are able to additional differentiate the hip flexor from the quad by including or eradicating the knee bend.

Hip flexors can typically be weak, which might simply be examined with handbook muscle testing. After I work with shoppers, a easy 60-second single-leg steadiness the place the up leg has a 90-degree knee bend works.

For addressing the hip flexor tightness, I’ve discovered a whole lot of success with of us spending a while “smashing their quads and hip flexors, even into the stomach,” says Babenko.

Listed below are three Bodily therapist-approved workout routines for really tight hip flexors.

Quad Smash

Intestine Smash

Sofa Stretch


For The Women: “ Even in case you are not feeling any signs, please go discover a “pelvic well being PT” to take a look at the well being of your pelvic ground, as this might contribute to many areas across the hip, just like the hip flexors.

By no means having a pelvic ground examination from a professional skilled is like by no means going to the dentist to your enamel! I consider it is a vastly under-served space that not sufficient ladies find out about,” explains Babenko.

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