The human body is complex, but with the sheer complexity of the hip region, it can be overwhelming to understand. When you get glute pain, there are things you should consider; how long you have had the pain, how does it affect your sport, how does it affect your everyday life? And is it something you think may be fixable?
The hidden pain
As humans, we like to take the easy option. When this comes to a random glute pain, we pass it off all too easily as just tight glutes because we don’t stretch or warm down properly. And we do this through choice, as when we finish our workout or match, we have done what we wanted to do. The last thing on most of our minds at this point, is spending half an hour to stretch. We are not thinking about how we will feel tomorrow or next time we play, we just want to chill. As juniors, we could get away with this and be fine. Unfortunately, as we age, we have less time to play and train and so our bodies become less accustomed to the effort we need to put in. likewise, our muscles become less flexible and less conditioned. This makes the, more likely to become stiff afterwards and arguably more likely to be injured. Needless to say, a lot of people are happy to take the risk and skip the recovery part of exercise.
What if, this easy option, of not warming down and stretching, wasn’t the cause of your random glute pain? To list a few; spine misalignment, trapped nerves, slipped disks and arthritis, are all potential causes of that glute pain that’s been pestering you. All with different treatment strategies to go with them. So! While it is encouraged that you look through YouTube, Instagram and websites for videos to fix that Glute pain of yours. You may find some exercises that help and you may not. Common videos include; rolling a golf ball in the top of your glutes, stretching your glutes and strengthening your glutes.
Spondylolisthesis, being movement of one spine segment on another, can pinch the nerve and send that signal to your glute that mimics glute pain. If left for a prolonged period, the pain will get worse and to prevent any further worsening, surgeons will gladly screw the vertebrae in place to stop it from moving further. This is just one of the conditions that can affect your spine and pretend to be something different. To clarify, rolling a golf ball in your glutes wont hold that vertebrae in place, stretching your glutes will potentially destabilise the spine (marginally!) but strengthening may bring you some relief form the discomfort. Strengthening your core will also be a common go to for these conditions, remember though, the core is not just your six pack.
For the sake of saving a couple £, I don’t think it’s worth not checking. I think it’s important that you see someone (provided they are in an appropriate profession), who can differentiate between them for you. Heed their advice or not, it will clear the fog and guarantee that you will have a much greater chance of staying active for longer. It may just be tight muscles, but is it really worth taking the risk?