One of the most common causes of hip, pelvic and low back pain is butt gripping. Common traits of the infamous butt gripper are having to pull your undies out of your backside every time you stand up from a chair, being taught to do this in ballet and barre as a kid and being told by your mother to tuck your bottom in. Rafael Nadel is the king of butt gripping. Ever wonder why his knees aren’t great?
Butt gripping is the highly scientific term for tensing your backside all the time. Ballet dances are taught from an early age to “tuck your backside under”, yogi’s are taught to do it into some poses. Sometimes people don’t even know they are doing it. Some people do it on one side (normally the sore side) and some people do it on both sides.
Today we look at how we can reduce it and keep our back and hips happy and healthy.
How to sit to reduce hip pressure and reduce your risk of butt gripping
When you sit down, sit right on the edge of the chair, place one hand on the edge of your hips under your sit bone and slowly pull one hip at a time all the way back into the back of the chair so you're in a good sitting position. This just takes the load off the front of your hip, gives your hips space so they aren’t compressed. It is a good habit for all of us to do when we sit down. You want to keep your chest up as well, so you're leaning back into the chair and it helps to put the weight through the entire part of your hip as opposed to overloading the front.
How to stand to break the butt gripping habit!
A lot of the time we see people coming in with hip or low back pain and they stand with their hips and pelvis all the way in front of their knees. So the first thing I want you to do is think about having two thirds of your weight in your heels, and about one third of the weight in your toes. It just helps to put your pelvis and hips over your feet and it allows the hips, the knees, and the feet to take the load of the body a little bit better as opposed to everything being through the hip when you're standing quite forward. So you can do this when you're brushing your teeth, making a cup of tea or coffee, or standing waiting for the bus. Just think about having two thirds of your weight in the heels and one third in the front of your foot.
Get your Glutes to wake up with a squat!
A little squat helps to engage your glutes, to take the pressure off your hip. The first variation we're going to do is with a ball. I want you to put the ball in between your knees and I don't want you to squeeze the ball. Ball's just there to help hold your knees in a nice position so they're not coming in too far. I want you to stick your hips out behind you as you squat down, just a little weight and hold that for three lots of 30 seconds. The second variation is with a band. So it's some TheraBand or an exercise band, whatever you've got lying around the house. And just wanted to slip that around your knees, and same position. So squatting down a little bit. Stick your hips out behind you and hold for three lots of 30 seconds.
So if you notice you are consistently pulling your underpants out when you stand up or you did a lot of ballet as a kid or your grand mother taught you to “tuck your butt in” to improve your posture then practice the above every day. The basic day to day things have a tremendous impact on your pain and hip health.