Article By Gary Robertson - Owner | posted 08.09.12

Hip Mobility to Relieve Lower Back Pain

Is your lower back pain and stiffness limiting your gains in the gym or your training? One of the most common complaints we hear at Skye Fitness is lower back pain.  Surprisingly, back pain will affect as many as four out of five people in Britain and results in 4.5 million days off work per year!

The lumbar spine is an integral region of the body because of its location (halfway between the upper and lower body), and its many muscular and ligament attachment points.  Controlling flexion and extension movements of the spine, the structures of the lumbar region, including the intervertebral discs and stabilising muscles are prone to injury with a combination of movements like twisting, bending and turning.  Practicing correct movement patterns and posture of the spine may not be enough to protect the lower back.  The answer to reducing back pain and avoiding future flare-ups can be as simple as assessing and improving your hip mobility, mechanics and posturing.

The hip joint is an extremely mobile ball and socket joint consisting of the head, the femur and the acetabulum of the pelvis.  Motions controlled by the hip include flexion, extension, internal and external rotation, abduction and adduction movements.

The most common hip range of motion limitation in our population is internal rotation.  With limited internal rotation, the external rotation musculature of the hip become short and tight.  The primary external rotators of the hip consist of the gluteus maximus, gluteus minimus and the piriformis muscles.  Increasing length an decreasing tightness of these muscles will allow more mobility of the hip and enhance movement mechanics of the lower body.

Try foam rolling these muscles on a regular basis.  I would advise twice a day or before and after you workout.

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