Quick – get on the floor – face down – arms out in front (Superman position). Now raise and lower your arms/feet at the same time (Back Extensions) for 20 times as quick as you can.
Question: Did you stay in position, or did your body start to move to one direction (like to the left or right)?
If your answer was ‘moved’ then it’s time to really focus on your hip alignment.
Why? Because sooner or later (if not already) chances are you’ve developed a leg length discrepancy, which can cause all sorts of issues from hamstring to the Achilles.
How you ask? Well, first you have to determine which of those pesky muscles has been over-tweaked where it will change your hip alignment.
Here is a listing below of all the muscles that attach and their movement design:
- Lateral or external rotation (30° with the hip extended, 50° with the hip flexed): gluteus maximus; quadratus femoris; obturator internus; dorsal fibers of gluteus medius and minimus; iliopsoas (including psoas major from the vertebral column); obturator externus; adductor magnus, longus, brevis, and minimus; piriformis; and sartorius.
- Medial or internal rotation (40°): anterior fibers of gluteus medius and minimus; tensor fascia latae; the part of adductor magnus inserted into the adductor tubercle; and, with the leg abducted also the pectineus.
- Extension or retroversion (20°): gluteus maximus (if put out of action, active standing from a sitting position is not possible, but standing and walking on a flat surface is); dorsal fibers of gluteus medius and minimus; adductor magnus; and piriformis. Additionally, the following thigh muscles extend the hip: semimembranosus, semitendinosus, and long head of biceps femoris.
- Flexion or anteversion (140°): iliopsoas (with psoas major from vertebral column); tensor fascia latae, pectineus, adductor longus, adductor brevis, and gracilis. Thigh muscles acting as hip flexors: rectus femoris and sartorius.
- Abduction (50° with hip extended, 80° with hip flexed): gluteus medius; tensor fascia latae; gluteus maximus with its attachment at the fascia lata; gluteus minimus; piriformis; and obturator internus.
- Adduction (30° with hip extended, 20° with hip flexed): adductor magnus with adductor minimus; adductor longus, adductor brevis, gluteus maximus with its attachment at the gluteal tuberosity; gracilis (extends to the tibia); pectineus, quadratus femoris; and obturator externus. Of the thigh muscles, semitendinosus is especially involved in hip adduction.
See any familiar muscles that you’ve been having issues with? Time to start stretching and using that trigger ball!