Runners: Hips?

NadNight
NadNight Posts: 794 Member
I enjoy running and am trying to build fitness and stamina slowly so I can run longer distances.

I’ve noticed my hips feel very achey, and sore after a run- more so than other parts of my legs/body. It could just be my body adjusting and that my hips are weaker than I thought but I wanted to ask about hip pain and what is normal and what to watch out for.

The pain/ache is down the front of my hips (imagine drawing a line up from your knee to the bony crest of your hip at the top of your leg and it’s in the leg crease where that line would cross). It’s localised so the ache doesnt spread to my groin or outer hips.

I’ve read up on various types of common hip injuries and causes and nothing seems to match. Is it likely to be a normal pain?

Replies

  • cmriverside
    cmriverside Posts: 33,937 Member
    edited May 2019
    Sounds like hip flexors. There are lot of exercises you can do to strengthen them. It isn't necessarily only the running that caused it. Do you sit all day in your day to day life? Desk work or school?

    Disclaimer: I'm not a runner, but I do get a problem with hip flexors if I sit too much, and that is the location. Could be something totally different. I would see a doctor if it continues.
  • 796fra
    796fra Posts: 45 Member
    I attempted to start running years ago and this hip pain stopped me. I started taking Barre classes and my hips strengthened a lot so I decided to try running again last year. The pain is gone. Even if you don't try barre, Google some exercises to strengthen hips.
  • NadNight
    NadNight Posts: 794 Member
    Sounds like hip flexors. There are lot of exercises you can do to strengthen them. It isn't necessarily only the running that caused it. Do you sit all day in your day to day life? Desk work or school?

    Disclaimer: I'm not a runner, but I do get a problem with hip flexors if I sit too much, and that is the location. Could be something totally different. I would see a doctor if it continues.

    Thanks for your reply! I’ve had a quick google and it definitely is my hip flexors like you suggested. I do also work a desk job so it makes sense that my hips might need strengthening
  • av_2905
    av_2905 Posts: 34 Member
    It looks like you've got to strengthen your hip flexors. It is key that you strengthen that and your glutes because not doing so can lead to more issues, like knee pain, shin splints and groin pain later on, especially with long distance running.
  • Monkeytoesninja
    Monkeytoesninja Posts: 6 Member
    I have the same problem. I also have a desk job. Thanks for asking the question because these answers helped me too!
  • firef1y72
    firef1y72 Posts: 1,579 Member
    My hips were/are my weak point and there's lots you can do to strengthen them, I've been working on mine for over a year and the pain I used to get after a long run has reduced my about 90%

    I do quite a few specific exercises to strengthen them.

    With a resistance band,

    Put band round ankles, stand next to wall, lift one leg to side (keep supporting leg soft), do around 20 reps, change legs, repeat for 3-4 sets.

    remove band, lean sideways in to wall, lift leg horizontally, bring foot in to bum and flick out (like the last part of a roundhouse kick),

    Fire hydrants/dog wees, on all fours (band round ankles), bring one leg up to the side like a dog peeing (keeping leg bent.

  • apullum
    apullum Posts: 4,838 Member
    The first thing I always recommend for runners with aches and pains is to check your shoes. Did you get fitted at a specialty running store? If not, do that. Do you have a few hundred miles on your properly fitted shoes? If so, it's probably time for a new pair. I track my shoe mileage, but I can also tell when they're worn out because I start getting discomfort that I don't usually have. (Runkeeper has a shoe tracker built in, and I'm sure other running apps do too.)

    This does sound very much like psoas tightness (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Psoas_major_muscle). That has several potential causes. Increasing mileage too fast is one, which is particularly common in newbies. Running on uneven surfaces where one leg is higher than the other (i.e., a road with a noticeable camber) can also do it. Muscle weakness or imbalance is pretty common. And of course, problems with shoes.

    Whenever there's pain, I recommend taking a little time off running to let your body recover, and use that time to stretch out the hip. I also do a yoga practice specifically targeted toward deep lower body stretches. (Yin yoga, if anyone's interested, but it can be tough to find a class.)

    Pigeon pose and Eye of the Needle are my favorite poses for the hips: https://www.yogajournal.com/practice/pigeon-pose. You can do Eye of the Needle against a wall if you have trouble using your hands to pull the leg in--just put that foot against the wall instead, and then move closer or farther from the wall to adjust the stretch.
  • emmamcgarity
    emmamcgarity Posts: 1,593 Member
    I don’t know how long you have been running, but have you increased pace or mileage recently?

    I had trouble with my hips and knees early in couch 2 5k. I already was wearing shoes that had been fitted properly from a running store. After some reading, I increased my rest days from 1 to 2 and more importantly SLOWED down my pace. I believe my pain was from going faster than my beginner body was ready for. After a week of slowing my pace the pain was gone and I was able to go back to 1 rest day between runs as long as I kept my pace slow.