The buttock and hip flexor relationship is part of the “Flexion Affliction” of my last post, where we discussed how excessive forward bending (flexion) is affecting the body negatively There are two main areas in the body where the “flexion affliction” comes into play: In this article we are looking at the lower spine/hip portion.
When we sit, work at a desk, drive, cycle, watch movies etc. the front of our hips are shortened (flexed). The same usually goes for our lower spine, which also ends up in flexion due to slouching. It thus follows that hip flexors and quadriceps, the muscles located at the front of the hips often end up with excessive tension. As a consequence of sitting and disuse the opposing muscles (the gluteals / buttock muscles) become weak. This will further encourage the strong muscles at the front to become more dominant thus making your hips feel chronically tight.
Research also shows that some muscles in the body are more prone to being inhibited (switched off) by the nervous system. The gluteals are one of them and here is why:
- They are powerful muscles of propulsion. From an evolutionary point of view the “big guns” gets switched off/inhibited to prevent big, vigorous movements because this would slow down the healing process of pretty much any lower limb injury. In effect, pretty much any lower body injury will temporarily inhibit the gluteal muscles. Glute inhibition can be caused by seemingly unrelated injuries like:
- Stubbing your toe
- Groin strain, Sciatica
- Low back pain
- Sore knees
- Essentially any injury from the waist downwards.
If you constantly suffer from tight hips regardless of stretching, you may well need to strengthen your gluteal muscles to remedy the problem. Want to read more?