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In this post we will go through a variety of Wall Plank variations that help rehabilitate the hip. Wall planks are a great way to build strength in the plank position without the strain on your joints of a usual plank. Hip injuries and pain can come from a variety of sources. Common hip injuries include the following. Labral tears are when the labrum, which is the seal that helps hold the hip joint together, tears. This can cause instability in the hip joint and lead to sharp pain in the groin, thigh or leg. Snapping hip (or iliopsoas impingement) is when the iliopsoas muscle becomes tight and stiff. The iliopsoas is your hip flexor muscle that runs along the front of your hip. If not enough stretching is done on the hip flexors, the muscles and tendons can get tight and the tendon can snap over the labrum, potentially leading a tear. Bursitis occurs when the bursae in the hip joint become inflamed. Bursa are small, fluid-filled sacs located near major joints that help to reduce friction between tissues. The two main types of bursitis in the hip are trochanteric bursitis and iliopsoas bursitis. Hip instability can occur from a traumatic accident or from long-term overuse. Overuse injuries usually result from repetitive activities such as sports, dance and ice skating. You may also experience hip pain from osteoarthritis, which results from the general wear and tear that happens in the cartilage of your hip joint. When cartilage breaks down, bone rubs on bone and can cause severe pain.
Avoid any exercises that case sharp pain or that don’t feel right.
Start in the Wall Plank position, standing an arms length away from the wall and then coming down to your forearms. Your forearms should be below shoulder height. Staying in this position is a great abdominal core exercise. While in the Wall Front Plank and the Wall Side Plank positions, make sure to keep your shoulders, hips and ankles in line, with your core engaged.
If you want to challenge the hip more and make the exercise more applicable to hip injury recovery, add a knee driver. Add a knee driver by bringing the knee up while keeping the rest of your body in the same position. The movement is just happening at your hip, keeping the abdominal area tight and maintaining that good alignment with the rest of your body.
Wall Front Plank
Move from a Front Plank to a Side Plank. In the Side Plank position, one forearm is on the wall and one side of your body is facing the wall. Bring your knee up, making sure that your knee is below hip height. The supporting leg needs to keep the outer part of your hip working in order to keep the body in a straight line, which makes this a great exercise to rehabilitate the hip. Switch to your opposite leg.
Wall Side Plank
Return back to the front position with the knee driver and then go to the other side. Move from Front, to Side, to Front and then to Side Plank again.
There you go! Do the Wall Plank and add that knee driver that will challenge the hip and work on hip stability which often decreases when you have hip pain, hip injury or hip irritation.
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Rick Kaselj, MS
If you want to overcome and prevent back and lower body injuries, then click here to check out the Best Gluteus Medius Exercises program.