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Tight, Sore, Painful Gluteal Muscles and Chiropractic Release

Tight, Sore, Painful Gluteal Muscles and Chiropractic Release

The Gluteus Maximus Muscle is the largest and the outermost of the gluteal muscles. It stretches from the sacrum and coccyx, parts of the spinal column, down to the femur. The other gluteal muscles include the gluteus minimus and medius. They each have a role in the normal function of the hips and legs. They are prone to tightness resulting in soreness, aches, and pain around the hips and in and around the buttocks.

Tight, Sore, Painful Gluteal Muscles and Chiropractic Release

The Gluteal/Rear End Muscles

There are three rear-end muscles:

  • The Gluteus Maximus extends the hip and rotates the thigh outwards, straightens the legs when moving, and provides strength.
  • Gluteus Minimus
  • Gluteus Medius
  • The minimus and medius are underneath the Maximus and stabilize the hip when:
  • Walking
  • Jumping
  • Other physical activities

There is another group of diagonal muscles under the gluteus minimus that attaches to the femur. The uppermost is the piriformis that is attached to the sacrum. The sciatic nerve and major arteries run below it.

Tightness and Irritation

The primary function of the muscles is to open the hips and push the legs out. Sitting for long periods shortens the gluteal muscles causing them to become tight, limiting normal hip function. The gluteal muscles are susceptible to tightness brought on from overuse and lack of development/strength. This can develop into tender/tight muscle bands that interfere with the normal function of the muscles. To get an example of what is happening imagine flexing and contracting one of the bicep muscles 6-10 hours a day. It would be extremely sore, tight, and tender.

Sports and Physically Active

Athletes and individuals that are physically active can also have tight gluteal muscles. This can cause post-game/exercise muscle soreness. Intense activities force the gluteal muscles to work overtime to support the back and knees. Sports that require a lot of leg muscle activation include:

  • Running
  • Soccer
  • Football
  • Crossfit
  • Dancing
  • Weight training

Awkward Walking Gait

Individuals that move with an unusual gait are vulnerable to straining the muscles. What happens is the muscles become stiff from the awkward positions/postures. This places additional strain on the back and hip muscles and worsens their overall posture. The hip muscles are also attached to the pelvis, and when the muscles begin to tighten they can pull on the gluteal muscles. Irritation of the sacroiliac joint can also place pressure on the piriformis, causing spasms that affect the gluteal muscles. Piriformis muscle spasms can also place pressure on the sciatic nerve, causing sciatica.

Diagnosis and Treatment

An examination will be necessary to diagnose whether the soreness or pain is due to muscle inflammation or other cause. Sciatica symptoms and problems at the hip level that involves the gluteus minimus and medius can be felt in the leg. The examination includes seeing and feeling muscle reactions, responses, contractions through a series of motion exercises and movements that involve different muscles. Common treatment includes:

  • Range of motion exercises
  • Strengthening exercises like bridging and resistance bands
  • Deep tissue massages
  • Heat and cold packs
  • Physical therapy
  • Electric muscle stimulation

Tightness in the glutes can be managed with chiropractic treatment. This includes:

  • Soft tissue work
  • Spinal joint manipulation
  • Lifestyle adjustments
  • Stretching
  • Diet
  • Health coaching

Simple exercises can help engage and strengthen the muscles. These include:


Body Composition


Insulin Resistance

Individuals that sit for long periods of time, don’t get enough physical activity, and have an unhealthy diet can experience insulin resistance. This happens when insulin is not able to transport excess blood sugar out of the blood and into the muscles. A study found that women who sat for eight hours a day had an increased chance of developing diabetes. Diabetics can be inclined to have more fat within the body, specifically visceral fat. This further encourages insulin resistance. Diabetics also experience rapid loss of muscle mass as they age, intensifying symptoms and further affecting body composition.

References

Cochrane, Darryl J et al. “Does short-term gluteal activation enhance muscle performance?.” Research in sports medicine (Print) vol. 25,2 (2017): 156-165. doi:10.1080/15438627.2017.1282358

Coratella, Giuseppe et al. “The Activation of Gluteal, Thigh, and Lower Back Muscles in Different Squat Variations Performed by Competitive Bodybuilders: Implications for Resistance Training.” International journal of environmental research and public health vol. 18,2 772. 18 Jan. 2021, doi:10.3390/ijerph18020772

Distefano, Lindsay J et al. “Gluteal muscle activation during common therapeutic exercises.” The Journal of orthopedic and sports physical therapy vol. 39,7 (2009): 532-40. doi:10.2519/jospt.2009.2796

Kalyani, Rita Rastogi et al. “Age-related and disease-related muscle loss: the effect of diabetes, obesity, and other diseases.” The lancet. Diabetes & endocrinology vol. 2,10 (2014): 819-29. doi:10.1016/S2213-8587(14)70034-8

Selkowitz, David M et al. “Which exercises target the gluteal muscles while minimizing activation of the tensor fascia lata? Electromyographic assessment using fine-wire electrodes.” The Journal of orthopedic and sports physical therapy vol. 43,2 (2013): 54-64. doi:10.2519/jospt.2013.4116

Low-Speed Rear-End Collisions Can Cause Whiplash

Low-Speed Rear-End Collisions Can Cause Whiplash

You are sitting in your car, stopped at a traffic light. Suddenly, a vehicle traveling at low-speed rear-ends your car. The impact isn�t hard although it is unexpected. You take a look at your car and see that there is minor damage, or no damage at all, to either vehicle. The bumpers absorbed the bulk of the energy from the crash, so they protected the car. You feel a little pain in your neck, and upper back, perhaps a little dizzy or you have a headache, but you shrug it off, reasoning that it is from the unexpected jolt. After all, they didn�t hit you that hard. You exchange information with the other driver and go on your way.

The next morning is a different story. Your neck is painful and stiff. You have pain in your shoulders and back as well. A visit to the doctor reveals a diagnosis of whiplash.

Is Whiplash Real?

Some people will tell you that whiplash is a made-up injury that people use to get more money in a settlement stemming from an accident. They do not believe it is possible in a low-speed rear-end accident and see it as a legitimate injury claim, mainly because there are no visible marks.

Some insurance experts claim that about a third of whiplash cases are fraudulent, but that leaves two-thirds of the cases legitimate. There is also a great deal of research that supports the claim that low-speed accidents can indeed cause whiplash � and it is very, very real. Some patients suffer from the pain and immobility the rest of their lives.

The Mechanics of Whiplash

When a person is sitting in their vehicle, they are usually upright with their head directly over their shoulders, and the neck as the support. The key to whiplash is that it is unexpected. The vehicle gets struck, the torso of the person in the first car gets thrust forward. However, the head does not immediately follow but instead falls backward, behind the body for a split second. In this position, the neck is hyperextended for the first time (to the rear).

low-speed rear end collision whiplash el paso tx.

As the torso snaps back against the back of the seat, the person�s head falls forward but is quickly yanked back as it follows the movement of the chest � then passes it. The second time the neck is hyperextended (to the front). The effects of this movement that lasts only a few seconds can cause debilitating pain and immobility. It gets compounded when the headrests are set too far back and are too low so that they do not provide adequate support.

What To Do If You Are In A�Low-Speed Rear End Collision

If you are in an accident, especially if you get rear-ended, and experience whiplash, see a doctor that day � even if you don�t feel much pain. The sooner you get into a doctor, the sooner you can begin treatment should a problem develop.

Often, people with whiplash don�t experience any effects until a day, or even two, later. The key is to stay ahead of the pain and take measures sooner rather than later to relieve it and keep it at bay. It also provides documentation should other issues arise, and you need the information for legal purposes.

Seeing your chiropractor soon after your accident can help you heal faster and manage your pain more effectively. With techniques like gentle manipulation and deep tissue massage, your neck can begin to improve almost immediately. Then you can get back to life a lot faster.

Auto Accident Injury Chiropractor