Daily life can take its toll on all of us – Teresa examines at her own muscle imbalances

A visit to Platinum Physio’s Ben Doyle helped me get to the bottom of my hip pain

After some manipulation, muscle release, dry needling (I do love the muscle twitching you get), and visual examination (walking, standing), Ben told me my hip flexors are very tight and my glutes very weak making my hip to be pushed to the side causing pain.

I know I tend to over-recruit my hip flexors and also have noticed how my left glutes and hamstrings are really weak compared to my right side, specially when I’m doing bridging on the reformer.

Ben pointed out it has probably been through years of compensation due to my knee injury, as well as lifting my children combined with bad postural habits that I have developed these imbalances. My hip felt much better the day after with the pain and limping gone in just two days (thank you Ben!).

Our daily routine can cause muscle imbalance – sitting down for long periods, working in front of a computer, lifting children, carrying handbags, etc. Muscle balance is hugely important to maintain a good posture and remain injury free.

If one muscle is tight, it’s more than likely that the antagonist or opposing one is weak and we are at a higher risk of injury. When these muscle imbalances occur, we need to stretch the tight and short ones, and strengthen the weak ones. In my case, I need to stretch my hip flexors and strengthen my medial glute.

There are many Pilates moves that can help with imbalances. Some examples like bridging, roll down series, climb a tree and feet in straps, will help me lengthen my hip flexors, while bridging, lunges and knee stretch will help to strengthen the glutes.