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How to Use a Foam Roller for Tight Hip Flexors

by Patty Weasler, RN November 11, 2020 0 Comments

Foam rolling is a method that uses your own bodyweight to perform a self-massage. Your hip flexors are made up of five muscles that control the flexion movement that brings the trunk and legs together. Using a foam roller for hip flexors can help prevent these important hip muscle groups from getting injured or tight, by improving blood flow and releasing tension. It’s a type of self-massage that presses deep into the muscles to help users find relief. Keep reading to learn more about how you can use foam rolling for your tight hip flexors.  

3 Ways to Foam Roll for Tight Hip Flexors

Foam rolling your hip flexors can have a positive impact on not only your hips but your lower back, hamstrings, and glutes. Check out the video above from physical therapist, Dr. David Lee or keep scrolling for the three best foam rolling techniques for tight hip flexors.

Lateral Leg Foam Rolling

Begin by placing the foam roller under your lower body with your left leg straight and right leg crossed over, foot flat on the ground. Start rolling your left hip and moving down your lateral quad towards your left knee. When you feel a tight spot, stop and move the foam roller back and forth to release it. Repeat the same movement on your right hip.

Quad Muscle Foam Rolling

Start off by lying face down with the foam roller under your hips and your arms supporting your upper body. Roll up and down your quad muscles and when you find a tight spot stop and bend and extend your lower leg about 20 times or until you feel the tightness loosen up.

Inner Thigh Foam Rolling

Lay down on your side with your bottom leg straight and your top knee bent with a foam roller under the inner thigh. Slowly move your hip to push your thigh back and forth over the foam roller. When you hit a tender spot, straighten your top leg and then bend it approximately 20 times to work out the tension.

To strengthen your hip flexors, check out this guide on hip flexor exercises

How Foam Rolling Reduces Hip Pain

Long days sitting at a desk can create tight hips which leads to not only hip pain but pelvic and back pain. Foam rolling is a great way to release the tension and stretch those muscles. By stretching the muscles and releasing the tightness less stress is placed on the surrounding structures in the body. Here’s a list of all the benefits of foam rolling:

  • Reduces muscle soreness
  • Improves range of motion
  • Releases trigger points
  • Promotes relaxation
  • Increases blood flow and speeds up muscle healing
  • As a warm up movement, it loosens tight muscles

Another way to release tightness is to stretch regularly. Here is the full guide on hip flexor stretches.

Tips for Foam Rolling

Before you start, come up with a plan on how you are going to use your foam roller. For your hip flexor muscles, you’ll want to have plenty of space on the ground to move.

  • Move Slowly

    A huge mistake first timers make is rolling too fast. Slow and steady is the name of the game in regards to foam rolling. You’ll see the best results by taking your time as you move over the muscle tissues.

  • Focus on Tight Spots

    As you’re moving over the roller stop anytime you feel a trigger point or tight spot. Work on these spots for a couple of minutes to try and release the tight fascia. But don’t spend too long rolling over them, it can cause more soft tissue irritation. 

  • Avoid Bones

    Never foam roll over boney spots like your knees, ankles, elbows, or spine. You can injure yourself and create an even bigger problem. Stick with the soft tissue that surrounds the bones to alleviate muscle tightness.

More Ways to Treat Hip Flexor Pain

    Foam Rolling for Hip Pain

    Foam rolling has become a popular way to relieve muscle tension and soreness. Moving the foam roller slowly over your hip muscles will improve your flexibility along with releasing trigger points. This can prevent injury, speed up healing time in already injured areas, and promote full body relaxation. If you have any health conditions talk to your doctor or physical therapist to make sure foam rolling is right for you.

    Sources:

    https://blog.paleohacks.com/foam-roller-hip-pain-exercises/

    https://www.sclhealth.org/blog/2018/07/why-you-really-need-to-foam-roll-and-how-to-get-started/

    Hip Flexor Pain Products

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    Patty Weasler, RN
    Patty Weasler, RN

    Patty Weasler is a freelance health writer and nurse. She is certified in critical care nursing and has been practicing for over 10 years. Patty lives in Milwaukee, WI with her husband and three children. She enjoys spending her time with family and educating people about their health.



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