Kristen Lettenberger, DPT, CSCS, from Bespoke Treatments, explains that the psoas is a deep hip flexor connecting the spine to the femur, responsible for knee elevation. The psoas and other hip flexors undergo significant strain during various activities, including sitting, which can lead to tightness if prolonged. According to Winnie Yu, DPT, CPT, also from Bespoke Treatments, sitting places the psoas in a shortened position, contributing to potential tightness.
Psoas Muscle: Causes Of Pain And Function
The psoas, concealed deep in your body, link your spine to the femur. It activates during movements like knee-to-chest actions, high knees, mountain climbers, squats, jumps, sprints, and running. Sitting for prolonged periods causes tightness and shortening. Incorporate psoas stretches after extended sitting or physical activity to promote flexibility and relief.
Effective Psoas Pain Relief Stretches
In just a short time, you can achieve significant results. According to Lettenberger, the following five stretches are highly effective for releasing the psoas.
- Half Kneeling Hip Flexor Stretch
- Standing Hip Flexor Stretch
- Low Lunge Twist
- Half Kneeling Stretch With Foot Elevated
Advantages Of Psoas Stretches
- Alleviate lower back pain: Stretching the psoas can reduce pain by loosening its attachment to the lower back.
- Enhance daily mobility: Frequent psoas stretches promote comfort while sitting or moving around during everyday activities.
- Relieve hip pain: Psoas stretches effectively alleviate front hip pain, particularly after prolonged sitting.
- Improve sports performance: The psoas benefits sports that involve hip extension or powerful kicking movements like soccer, football, and running.
- Increase power: Stretching the psoas can enhance the hip range of motion, leading to higher jumps, deeper squats, and potentially faster sprints.