In this weeks post we are going to discuss the importance of the posterior hip and what the lack of movement in the hips does to the body.
Being able to move through the hips is very important in any athletic movement but also in day to day activities. Every time one goes to sit down, squat, or bend over proper posterior hip movement is crucial and necessary for injury prevention. Without proper posterior hip movement the lower back and knees are put under tremendous stress and have to work much harder than they should.
The posterior hip is made up of primarily six muscles, a fibrous joint capsule and the hip joint. These muscles help rotate the leg and control pelvic stability. When they have to over-work to control the pelvis they become tight and restrict hip motion. Once motion has become restricted, the hip capsule then begins to shrink further limiting motion. Treatment of the posterior hip is a combination of mobilization, soft tissue techniques such as Active Release Techniques and/or Graston, and home rehab exercises.
Individuals that lack posterior hip mobility and have tight hip external rotators commonly have a posture that is termed “Butt Gripper”. This is due to the appearance that one is squeezing the buttocks muscles together and the flattening of the low back.
The “Butt Gripper” appears to not have a well-defined back side and is aware that they are not very flexible, especially in the hamstrings and hips. Their lower back will be very flat if not rounded and may have trouble finding pants that fit or stay up on their waist. This individual may be guilty of showing off his “plumber’s crack” when bending over or stumping down.
“Butt Grippers” appear to have very strong back, hip and core muscles, but they actually have very weak core and glut stabilizing muscles. This posture and weakness places them at higher risk for lumbar disc injuries and low back pain. If you or someone you know is a “Butt Gripper” check out the posterior hip exercises by clicking here.
Yours in health,
Dr. Justin Hildebrand