Monday, 21 February 2011

Are your gluteus muscles tight??

Then get stretching!! You may think that therapists in general are very glad in advising people to stretch, stretch and stretch even more, but there is a reason why we do it. Tight muscles can for example restrict your range of movement and cause muscle strains unnecessarily which is not something you want if you are an athlete or do any type of exercise or sport.

Today I wanted to show a few good stretches for your gluteus muscles, in particular for your gluteus minimus, medius and your piriformis muscle. If you suffer from sciatic pain, which can be caused by the sciatic nerve getting pinched, there is an even bigger reason to stretch these muscle groups. The sciatic muscle runs through your piriformis muscle so for a lot of people a tight piriformis muscle can aggravate the sciatic symptoms in the buttocks and sometimes down the leg.

However everyone can benefits from gluteus stretching, but it is up to you if you want to stretch or not, so I will at least show you how you can do it. I have arranged them according to how “difficult” I think they are. Starting with the “easiest” ones first.

Sitting gluteus stretch:

• Sit upright on the floor, cross your left leg over the other

• Place the left hand behind your left side and grab hold of the left leg with your right hand and pull this to the right

• Make sure you sit with a straight upright posture and feel the stretch on the outside of your left bottom

Laying gluteus stretch

• Start by laying on your back on the floor

• Bend both knees, cross right leg on top of the left leg (the right foot should rest on top of the left knee)

• Grab your left leg behind your thigh with both hands and pull it towards you until you can feel a stretch on the outside of your right bottom

• When you are done with one leg, cross the other leg over and repeat

Standing gluteus stretch over a table/bench

As you can see I just stretch instead of watching tv!!:)
• Start by standing in front of a table or bench which is about hip height

• Place your left knee at 45° on top of the table

• Step backward with your right leg and bend the right knee slightly
• From this position lean forward from your hips and place your hand in front of you
• Lean forward even more to increase the stretch

• Feel the stretch on the outside of your left gluteus

Laying gluteus stretch on the front (you need to be quite flexible to be able to get into this position!!!)

• Start off by placing your left leg at 45° in front of you

• Use your arms to move yourself into the position outlined above (difficult to explain this one)

• Lean over until you can feel a comfortable stretch on the outside of the left gluteus

So now you can all  get stretching that gluteus between and after sessions!

And just to show you all that I have now invested in a foam roller = torture roller to keep myself busy. You can use the foam roller to all sort of exercises including press ups.

However make sure you push the foam roller down cause if you don't you may end up like this!

Good luck!