Yoga and Hip Pain

Post by Brian Yee, PT, MPhty, OCS, FAAOMPT

Here is a great read from the New York Times about hip pain that can occur during yoga. I need to first say that I do not think doing yoga is a bad thing, nor should people not do yoga. I find this article interesting because in our clinic we do find people getting injured in yoga, not necessarily because of the technique, but because people who are hyperflexible are unaware that increased stretching of an already “stretched out” joint or muscle may cause further stress and lead to injury. This could be females or males. This principle also pertains to any exercise regimen that people may involve themselves with, not just yoga.

If you have hyperflexibilities in your body, it is important to have a good sense of muscle control to help stabilize a joint or muscle that is more flexible than usual. The risk of injury when you have good muscle stability around a flexible joint is much less than a joint that is just flexible and keeps getting more flexible.

Some of the best athletes I have seen are those who have more flexibility than what is expected and have great (if not better) muscle stability and control.

I personally believe that Physical Therapists are some of the few health practitioners that are able to assess if a person is hyperflexible, as well as whether a person has good muscle control and tying together if there is a risk of injury for that person in a sport or activity that they desire to do. Also, if you choose to do yoga, you should find a yoga instructor that understands which parts of your body may be hyperflexible and provides the appropriate exercise progressions that do not cause pain or injury.

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