Your Iliopsoas: The Hidden Cause of Your Hip Pain

The iliopsoas is a pretty cool muscle.

It’s one of the most complex muscles in the body, and it is the only lower back and hip muscle to attach to the front of the spine.

In fact, the iliopsoas is actually two muscles in one: the psoas muscle and the iliacus muscle.

The psoas muscle attaches along the lumbar spine, and the intervertebral discs then descends obliquely to attach at the upper inner thigh bone. The iliacus muscle attaches to the upper two-thirds of the iliac fossa then descends to join the psoas major tendon, with some of its fibers attaching directly to the femur near the lesser trochanter.

The primary function of both of these muscles is hip flexion. In other words, these muscles work to lift the knee and take your next step while walking.

The Secret Source of Your Hip Pain

Due to its unique attachment along the spine, the iliopsoas also plays a major role in maintaining upright posture.

Since it is situated in that position, the longer you sit, the tighter this muscle gets. The tighter the muscle gets, the harder it becomes to straighten up when you get up from sitting.


Treating Your Hip Pain

The iliopsoas is an easy muscle to treat. If yours is irritated, or you have been diagnosed with an iliopsoas sprain, pull, bursitis, or tendonitis, you need to be able to pinpoint the root of your pain and treat the other hip muscles.

I have treated ballet dancers with huge balls of muscle spasm in the iliopsoas the feels like a big rock that surrounds the belly button.

It is a major stabilizer for the low back, pelvis, hips,” and legs.

They easiest way to treat the iliopsoas is to place a basketball, medicine ball, or something else about that size on the floor. You basically lay down on top of it. You want the top of the ball to be below the belly button, and off to the side, between the belly button and the front of the hips (the ASIS).

If you place your thumb on your belly button and your pinky on the boney point at the front of most of the pelvis, along that line between your thumb and your pinky will be the iliopsoas.

Lay on the ball, and angle your body so the top of the ball is going into the painful side of your abdomen.

Breathe in and breathe out. Try to relax as much as possible, and lay on top of it.

Remember, whenever you treat the iliopsoas, you always want to treat the hip (gluteal) muscles, back of the leg (hamstring) muscles, and front of the leg (quadriceps) muscles, if you want to get rid of the problem.

I hope that this helps you to have a pain-free day.