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July 31, 2009

When Back Pain Is A Hip Problem

Watch a toddler move. They can stand, sit and squat with ease. Adults should be able to move the same way, but because of how we use our bodies, many of us can no longer move with that kind of freedom. Our daily activities no longer have us to move every which way and as a result, activities such as prolonged sitting, cause muscles shorten and get weaker.

“Just as muscles adapt to strength training by getting bigger and stronger,” says Robertson, “they also adapt to inactivity by shortening and getting weaker.”

According to Gray Cook, MSPT, OCS, CSCS, a Danville, Va.–based physical therapist, three quarters of the patients he has with back pain have hip problems. Real problems begin when people start to try to exercise with hip dysfunction.

As physical therapists, we are instructed that where-ever a patient presents with pain, check the joints above and below. Chances are we will locate contributing factors at those adjacent joints. Commonly, when we address problems at the hips and low back, the dysfunction causes compensation patterns all the way up and down the body.

Exercises to mobilize and strengthen the hips in all planes of direction will act as a good warm up to an exercise program.

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Posted by linda at July 31, 2009 4:17 PM

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