My Back Hurts!….and my knees aren’t great either.

Check your hips.

I am trying my hardest to not be too esoteric about the cause of your back and/or knee pain. But, in truth, it may not be your back and/or knees that is causing your back and/or knee pain. At least it wasn’t your back and knees originally. Most likely your hips are stiff and stuck in a narrow range of motion and strength that puts undue stress on your lumbar spine and knees. Most likely this movement and strength degradation started awhile ago and your body has been buffering the dysfunction under your pain/discomfort threshold. Then the pain rises to a level that you can’t ignore and you blame, and too often treat the wrong body part.

The reason our hips are often stuck and stiff is that we really don’t spend any time using the hip range of motion that is (was) available to use. This is due to lifestyle choices. Why sit on the floor when there is a comfy chair right there! But before you throw out your furniture and begin living a Spartan lifestyle, try to nudge those hips back into working order with a few daily stretches.

You don’t have to be amazing at these stretches and achieve a yogi level of flexibility. The point is to reclaim enough hip range of motion that you allow you hips to do the job that you have been outsourcing to your back and knees.

Guidelines:

-Hold the stretches for at least a minutes (2-3 minutes is better). This helps overcome our innate stretch reflex.

-If you feel numbness, tingling, or pain >3/10, stop and reposition.

-Doing these daily is best

-Try cycling these stretches into your daily routine for 4 weeks and then keep an out for my next post on hips

Seated Hip External Rotation

90/90 Stretch

Straddle

Long Sit