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Causes of Hip Pain During and After Running

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Hip pain is among the list of common concerns of many athletes. However, not everyone knows what actually causes this problem. After reading many reviews of runners as well as from my experiences during running, I would like to offer some causes of Hip pain during and after running.

Causes of Hip Pain during and after running:

1. Osteoarthritis

This is one of the most common causes of chronic hip pain for both athletes and non-athletes. Osteoarthritis is a type of arthritis caused by degeneration of the hip joint. Over time, the protective cartilage of the hip socket wears down and bare bone is exposed, making it very painful when moving. There are many treatments available, including strengthening exercises, however when conservative treatments fail hip replacement surgery may be another option.

2. Hip Pointer Injury:

A hip pointer injury is a painful, acute injury caused by a direct impact on the iliac crest of the pelvis. The injury may cause the bleeding into the abdominal or hip abductor muscles that attach to the iliac crest. The bone and overlying muscle are usually bruised, and the pain can be passionate. Suitable protective equipment can help prevent hip pointers, and immediate first aid then rest can speed recovery.

3. Piriformis and Hamstring strains syndrome:

The longer leg can end up bearing more of the work in pulling you forward, therefore making the hamstring more vulnerable to strains.

4. IT Band Syndrome:

it is seen increasingly as an issue originating from weak hips and glutes, however, the increased loads from a seemingly longer leg can have the same effect.

5. Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome (Runner’s Knee):

The knee is another joint that brings excessive forces to the longer leg, and can, therefore, be subject to injury.

More: How to select the best shoes for knee pain

6. Groin Pulls and Strains:

Pain in the front of the hip and inner thigh (groin) is often the result of an adductor muscle pull or strain. This acute muscle injury is also similar to any other type of strained or pulled muscle, but it happens when the muscles of the front and inner thigh are stressed beyond their limits.

7. Bursitis of the Hip:

Hip bursitis is commonly seen in runners due to overuse, but can also be caused by a fall or impacts that result in inflammation of the hip bursa. If the bursa in the hip is irritated or inflamed, the runner will have pain during almost all movement in the hip.

8. Strength imbalances (or asymmetries):

This can cause a runner to favor one side more than the other, which finally pulls the hip out of alignment.

9. Injury history:

This can be seen as a source of the asymmetries driving form hitches, which causes misalignment to develop.

More: Running Injuries and How to Avoid Running Injuries

10. Cambered roads:

Since we have all been taught to run (or walk) against traffic, we tend to go to the right or the left side of the street (depends on the rule of each country). This causes our left leg (or right left) to have to reach down a little farther than our right (left) since roads have a slight camber to help water drain off.

 There are non-running contributors to hip misalignment, too

  • Poor posture:

  • This is a “low intensity, high frequency” contributor that can contribute over time. It can happen when we sit cocked slightly to one side, as we tend to lean against a counter or table while standing, or while driving—the very nature of must use one foot can be a factor in misalignment.
  • Habits of imbalance:

  • Most of us have a tendency to put our purses or laptop bags on the same sides or to use our phones with the same ears.

Hip alignment issues are one of the main causes of hip pain during and after running, and, if it is not untreated, that can lead to injury. The role of the pelvis is given as a fulcrum in each of the three planes of motion of the body (frontal, transverse, sagittal), there are some potential drivers of alignment issues, as problems tend to propagate to the hip. It takes quite some time to show up.

The symptoms of pelvic misalignment and the condition is often first recognized like a leg-length discrepancy. Such discrepancies can be attributed to permanent biomechanical issues when in fact they are often a temporary condition given by poor pelvic alignment. Therefore the tendency is to leap quickly to orthotics in such a situation, when in fact preventative exercises and appropriate corrective may address the true issue.

Hip misalignment can be diagnosed by a professional, who will usually have you relax while lying down with your knees pulled up then extended fully so they can see how your knees are positioned. You may get an indication of this issue when you see the different wear patterns on the soles of your shoes.  The shoe with greater heel and toe wear will be the side that is rather longer, since it may overextend and lead to more heel striking.

One particular exercise that can specifically aim to get the hips back in alignment was demonstrated by Leo Kormanik at Ohio Sports Chiropractic:

  • Lying on your back with your foot flat against the wall.
  • Thrusting the foot of the “shorter leg” against the wall forcefully and quickly, keeping it flat.
  • Pushing down on your hip on the same side with your hand and keeping the foot against the wall with a hand on the hip for 10 seconds.
  • Relaxing and then repeat 10 times

This is a good exercise to do every time, but particularly as part of your warm-up routine before running. Over time, your hip will return to better alignment gradually. You may realize some change in your soreness patterns like your form corrects itself, especially if you’ve been running with the misalignment for a long time.

For prevention of hip alignment issues, avoid some of the behaviors mentioned above through such steps as Strength training, Regular massage, Run on flat surfaces, Watch your posture and Be conscious of your pattern. It is said that hip misalignment is so easy to develop and therefore pretty common, all runners will do well to pay attention to their habits, which may contribute to this issue, and do what they can do to avoid it from happening.

I hope that this article proves to be helpful about the causes of hip pain During and After Running.

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