Hip Injuries in Happy Valley
Your hips are formed to be quite strong naturally. The joints are the biggest and most stable ball and socket style in our bodies. Likewise, the musculature surrounding our hips, namely – our glutes, are also typically the biggest muscle group in our body. Our hips must be strong as they support our ability to walk upright and bear a fair amount of our body weight all the while we are standing, walking, running, and jumping! That being said, our hips can still experience injuries from a myriad of causes and situations. For reference during reading the rest of our content, we will use the term “hip” as an umbrella for the regions including the hip joint, buttocks/glutes, pelvis, and groin. Location specific content will be identified for orientation.
Because of its inherent stability and the large musculature surrounding it, hip injuries are typically experienced as tightness, stiffness, and pain; rather than instability or feeling loose. Problems that drive pain can range from muscular strains, cartilage tears, and arthritis. Understanding specifically what is your underlying cause of pain will make a huge difference in prescribing the correct treatment plan. At Ascent Physical Therapy, one of our Doctors of Physical Therapy will complete a thorough physical examination to assist in understanding what your pain source is.
Please continue reading to find more information about a handful of the most common hip injuries we treat, but if you don’t see yours or aren’t sure, call us today to find out how we can assist.
Our legs are relatively heavy and the muscles that lift them, the hip flexors, can become overworked at times, which result in a strain injury. Hip flexor strains are usually associated with any of the following: running, hiking, kicking sports, and sit ups / leg raises.
Due to the variable number of muscles that flex your hip and their relative attachment points, where you experience your symptoms can guide the examination of what is causing your pain. Common locations include: low back, lower abdominals, groin, and front of hip regions.
Hip flexor strain irritation can lead to negative effects in training and physical activity levels. It is important to identify the culprit and how to resolve & prevent future injuries sooner, rather than later. If the underlying cause is not addressed, symptoms will come and go in a rest->recover->injury cycle until the problem is corrected.
Your sacroiliac joints are where your pelvis joins together with your tailbone. When there is a dysfunction at either of these articulation points, symptoms may become noticeable. Many people describe their symptoms as discomfort that radiates in the low back and may travel down into the buttocks. Sometimes this can be confused as sciatica since both share the description of pain radiating from back into lower extremities, BUT true sciatic pain is nerve based and is typically much sharper and more distinct, like a spear or “lancing”.
Your SI joint is the interface where your upper body connects to your lower body. It is inherently quite strong and stable but not immune to problems. It is estimated that up to 20% of low back pain is driven by symptoms from the SI joint.
Some circumstances and conditions can reduce the inherent stability of your SI joint. The most common and notable is the increased ligamentous laxity from pregnancy.
While adjustments can be quite relieving temporarily, it is important to work on stabilizing treatments to your sacroiliac joint through targeted exercises to prevent future problems.
Our groin muscles, or adductors, are responsible for providing support during leg movements. They are relatively smaller than other hip and leg muscles. Because of this, they can become strained, or pulled, during a sudden change of direction, falling, or slipping.
In athletic populations, if you suffer from ankle sprains or have problems with ankle stability, often you will compensate by overusing your groin muscles to make up the difference. Taking this into account, during sudden explosive changes in direction, especially lateral movements, your groin muscles can become overwhelmed and result in injury. Even if you’re not into sports, icy weather can be a recipe for disaster. If not treated, groin strains can lead to longstanding movement compensations that may leave you susceptible to other complications later.
If any of these sound like a problem you’ve been experiencing and hip pain has been interfering with your life, call us today to get started on a plan of care that works for you. Ascent Physical Therapy is conveniently located off Sunnyside Road in Happy Valley. We also love treating our neighboring communities of Damascus, Gresham, Clackamas, and Sandy at our top rated physical therapy clinic!