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Hip Mobility Issues Explained

Hip Mobility Issues Explained by Physiotherapist

Are you someone like me who previously would get pain in my back or hips, whenever I would start to increase my weight deadlifting or squatting? Have you had issues with tight hips however no amount of stretching or mobilisations helped? Have you ever wondered if there was something wrong with you compared to everyone else? Maybe you had hip mobility issues, which affected your mechanics when performing certain movements.

Well through years of perseverance, I’m glad to tell you that you are not crazy and it could in fact be a structural reason (thank you genetics’). Although we have a belief that everyone has this ideal posture or position which is required to perform movement, we are starting to realise that is far from the truth and we as humans, are all different.

As humans, we all have different anatomical hip positions. The terms anteversion and retroversion describe the position of the femur in relation to how it fits in the socket. Anteversion is where the person’s acetabulum is angled forward and retroversion is where the persons acetabulum is angled backwards.

Hip Mobility Issues Seen By Physiotherapists

Our hip joints are a ball and socket joint which allow movement in three planes. However, for people with more anterovesion in the hips are able to squat and deadlift deeper while keeping their toes pointed forward as there is more room the acetabulum (the femur doesn’t contact acetabulum through the range of motion and glides smoothly).

However, for people with retroverted hips, they tend to need to turn their toes out to help create that depth in the squat or deadlift, otherwise the femur will hit the acetabulum creating a structural block and they need to compensate somewhere else to create that movement and in most cases it is the lower back.

A physiotherapist can guide you through a thorough assessment to find out the severity of your hip mobility issue:

  • Is it a soft tissue or a structural block?
  • Finding the right position for your feet to perform squats.
  • Whether a modified deadlift may be more appropriate to help engage muscles that are not working optimally if you in fact have a structural block.
  • Create a program specifically for you to help prevent injury in the future.

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