Hip Mobility & Staying Limber

James Fowler Physical TherapyHips, Stretches & Warm-UpsLeave a Comment

Hip pain is often associated with getting old, but it can happen to anyone. Each particular hip condition can differ in severity with treatment decided on a case by case basis.  If you find yourself in some serious pain, there are a few things you can do before calling us.

The Hip

This crucial joint is a combination of bone, muscle and ligament and is key to basic mobility. The hip is also susceptible to a variety of ailments. These do not discriminate by age either. Hip pain can affect anyone in varying degrees of severity.

Common Causes of Pain:


One of the most common factors contributing to hip pain is arthritis.  Arthritis occurs when the cartilage in the hip breaks down.  Cartilage is a rubbery substance inside the hip joint that acts as a type of gasket holding the femoral head in place. Without it, the femoral head rubs against the joint creating friction and inflammation.


Though, uncommon femoral hernias can happen; they often affect women.  The femoral canal is home to the femoral artery and other ligaments important to the basic function of the leg. In cases of overuse, the wall of the canal can weaken allowing the tissue to break through. The hernia manifests as a bulge in the groin or upper thigh, causing pain in the front of the joint, making it challenging to walk.


The tendons in the hip that connect the muscles are prone to swelling when strained. This is a common condition for active individuals – particularly runners. Tendons become inflamed and sore. Athletes experiencing tendonitis may hear a clicking sound when they move their hip.

Hip Fractures

This condition commonly affects the elderly.  More often than not those suffering from it also have osteoporosis – a calcium deficiency in the bones.  In these cases fractures may not be detected at first.  Pain levels escalate and the toes begin to curve outward; eventually, crippling pain is experienced while standing, straightening your legs or lifting.

How to Find Relief From Pain


Mild cases of hip pain can be treated with an average over the counter anti-inflammatory such as tylenol, motrin or aleve, providing temporary relief. Always speak with your doctor before taking new medication. For natural anti-inflammatory relief try icing for 15 minutes a few times a day.  Stay away from high impact exercise.

Physical Therapy

Physical therapy is recommended on case by case basis.  We tailor your treatment to your needs.  Those with arthritis are prescribed low impact exercise and regular stretching.  Check out this picture of a stretch you can try at home!

Starting your morning with stretching and light exercise can activate your muscles. Stretches like the one above can prepare your body for the stresses of the day.  Lie flat on on your back with your legs shoulder width apart. Bend your legs, placing your feet flat and push your body up. Keep your back straight and your knees lined up with your ankles.  Hold this stretches for 5 seconds before slowly lowering down. Repeat in sets of 10.

Aqua Therapy

In a similar manner to physical therapy, aqua therapy can help to restore mobility. Aqua therapy is conducted in a pool – in which the body is 80% weightless.  The buoyancy effect experienced reduces the load across the affected joint.  Thus allowing for effective stretching and exercise!

We Can Help

We encourage anyone suffering from pain to contact us.  Joint pain can affect your quality of life. While we are happy to provide you with the resources to alleviate that pain, we cannot properly recommend treatment until you let us take a look. Through physical therapy, massage therapy, and other disciplines, we can increase your mobility, reduce pain and tension, and help you move a little easier.

See Also

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *