The hip is a ball and socket joint where the top of the thigh bone (head of the femur) meets the socket (acetabulum of the pelvis). To deepen the socket we have a fibrocartilage labrum which acts like an o-ring to provide stability and cushion within the joint. Ideally when you lift your leg to bring it to your chest, or you squat down to pick something off of the floor, the head of the femur should glide and spin within the socket as your leg and pelvis moves.
Impingement can occur due to standing and sitting habits, athletic overuse and overall "wear and tear" of daily living. The technical term is called "femoracetabular Impingement" which is the collision of the head/or neck of the femur and the acetabulum; the head of the femur does not have full range of motion within the socket.
Click here to watch a video showing hip range of motion.
What are the symptoms associated with hip impingement?
- Pain in the groin/hip after prolonged sitting or walking
- Popping or catching in the hip
- Pain along the side of the thigh or in the butt
- Decreased hip range of motion, especially with hip flexion and internal rotation
- Pain in the hip with walking uphill
What can you do about it?
- Change how you sit. Sit on the floor in a variety of ways: sit on a yoga bolster or cushion, cross-legged, side-sit, etc.
- Sit less and stand more at work. The Don't Just Sit There product is a great way to teach you how to create a dynamic workstation.
- Do some corrective exercises. Try these alignment snacks from Nutritious Movement: Walk this Way! Stand this Way!, All Around The Thighs We Go, Stretching the Standing Muscles, Hips Don't Lie- They Sit.
- Stand Better. Read this other blog about hips.
- Breathe better. Watch this video about breathing for core function. And this video for breathing assessment and correction.
- Rehydrate and restore your tissues with The MELT Method (purchase the book and the soft foam roll to get started) or Yoga Tune-up (purchase the Roll Model book and the Yoga Tune Up therapy balls).
- Do these videos below to open up your hips.