The Joint Pain Relief Workout: Healing Exercises For Your Shoulders Hips Knees And Ankles
Is joint pain holding you back? Perhaps an achy ankle or sore knee is making it difficult to enjoy a run through your favorite park or even taking a short walk. Or maybe a throbbing hip or shoulder prevents you from whacking a golf ball or performing simple tasks like carrying a bag of groceries. The exercises in this report, The Joint Pain Relief Workout: Healing exercises for your shoulders, hips, knees, and ankles, can help relieve ankle, knee, hip, or shoulder pain, and help you become more active again, which can help you stay independent long into your later years.
Move Of The Month: Seated Pretzel
Stretches the buttocks, hips, and outer thighs.
Hold: 1030 seconds
Starting position: Sit up straight in a chair and rest your left ankle on your right thigh above your knee. Place your hands on your thighs.
Movement: Keeping your spine neutral, slowly hinge forward from your hips until you feel a stretch in your left hip and buttock. Hold. Slowly return to the starting position. Repeat with your right ankle on your left knee. This is one rep.
Tips and techniques: Keep your spine neutral, not rounded, and your chest lifted as you lean forward. Keep your shoulders down and back, away from your ears, as you stretch. For a deeper stretch, gently press down with the hand on your bent leg.
Learn More About Hip Injections
Hip injections may be performed to both diagnose and treat hip pain. They involve injecting a local anesthetic combined with a steroid or corticosteroid directly into the outer regions of the spinal cord. This is where nerves lead to the hip, or in the hip joint itself. This procedure can:
- Help diagnose what specific nerve is leading to your pain
- Focus further treatments
- Inhibit pain signals of hip nerves
- Drain fluid in the hip
Hip injections provide a minimally-invasive and safe treatment option for more moderate to severe cases of hip pain.
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How Is Hip Pain Diagnosed
Doctors determine the source of hip pain using a number of different diagnostic techniques, from medical history to medical imaging. During a physical exam, your doctor may ask you to walk around to observe joint movement, measure it compared to your normal hip, or manipulate the hip joint using various range-of-motion techniques.
If sciatica is suspected, for example, a straight-leg raise might cause aggravation. If an infection is present, touching the affected area might cause pain. You may also encounter questions about your pain, including whether its affected by the time of day, position, activity, and when it first started to bother you.
Further diagnostics can include imaging tests, such as ultrasounds, MRI scans, CT scans or X-rays, blood bests, or examinations of joint fluid. Any combination of these tests can create a more thorough picture of your issue.
Best Stretches & Mobility Exercises For Hip Pain
If you are already experiencing significant hip bursitis, stretches, low-intensity exercises, and low impact workouts should become your new best friend to help alleviate the issue.
If after a few weeks no improvement is seen after performing these stretches and strengthening exercises, you may need to see a physical therapist for follow-up care.
1. Hip Rotator Stretch:
The hip rotator stretch is extremely simple to perform and does a great job of loosening the hips.
How to do the Hip Rotator Stretch:
- Lie on the floor with your knees bent, and your feet off the floor. Lift the affected leg, pulling the same side foot to place it on the other thigh.
- The knee of the injured leg should now be pointing perpendicular to your body.
- Place your hands around your bottom leg, and placing your same side elbow on the injured knee, use it to gently push your knee away from you.
- You’ll gradually feel a gentle stretch build. Keep pushing until the rotator muscles and the iliotibial band is stretched.
- The muscle should feel tight, but there should be no discomfort.
- Hold for 30 seconds and then gradually allow the knee to return to normal.
2. Figure 4 Stretch:
Sometimes called the iliotibial band stretch, you can either perform this standing up, which requires more balance, sitting on the ground, or lying down similar to the hip rotator stretch.
This will provide the iliotibial band and other external rotators with a gentle stretch, also making it an awesome tensor fasciae latae stretch.
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How Does Osteoarthritis Affect The Hip Joint
Patients who have osteoarthritis of the hip sometimes have problems walking. Diagnosis can be difficult at first. That’s because pain can appear in different locations, including the groin, thigh, buttocks, or knee. The pain can be stabbing and sharp or it can be a dull ache, and the hip is often stiff.
Nonsurgical Treatments For Hip Arthritis
- Activity modifications may help reduce painful flare-ups. Avoid activities that aggravate hip arthritis, such as running, jumping and other high-impact exercises.
- Lifestyle modifications, such as weight loss, can help reduce stress on the hip joint.
- Physical therapy exercises can help improve strength in the hip. Engaging in low-impact exercises and activities, such as swimming and cycling, and remaining physically active are key to managing hip arthritis symptoms.
- Heating pads can help soothe inflammation in the hip.
- Medications and injections, such as corticosteroid injections, hyaluronic acid injections, platelet-rich plasma injections, vitamin and mineral supplements, and immunosuppressive or biologic medicines can help control pain and inflammation. Which medications will work best depends on the type of arthritis.
- Walking aids such as a cane or walker provide support when walking.
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How Your Hip Works
Your hip is a very stable and strong joint.
Its known as a ball-and-socket joint. This is because the top of the thigh bone is shaped like a ball. This ball sits inside a hollow socket in your pelvis.
Ball-and-socket joints give the most movement of all the different types of joints in the body.
The hip joint is held together by a covering of muscles which are secured to the bones by strong cords called tendons.
These muscles and tendons form a capsule around the joint and support its movements. They help move the joint, supporting your leg and upper body movement.
Inside the capsule is the synovium, which lubricates the joint with synovial fluid and keeps the cartilage healthy. The cartilage sits between the bones of your hip joint to stop them rubbing together and reduces any impact when you walk or move your hip.
With all this support, it is unusual for the hip to become dislocated, even after a high-impact injury.
A Summary Of Hip Bursitis Exercises And Prevention
Hip bursitis definitely isn’t the worse ailment you can suffer from, and it’s relatively common. However, to prevent the need for steroid injections or visits to physical therapists, take care of your hips. This means training them appropriately while not placing too much stress on them.
Follow the guidelines in this article and if you still have lingering questions, remember one of our favorite sayings, “Strong things don’t break.” Focus on building up your hip, so you don’t need to worry about them breaking down.
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When To See A Healthcare Provider
If your hip pain is interfering with your everyday life, it may be time to contact a healthcare professional. If you have a mild or moderate burning sensation in the hip but are able to complete your activities of daily living, ask yourself these questions to gauge whether or not you should get help.
- Is the hip warm or tender to the touch?
- Does the hip appear deformed?
- Are you unable to move or bear weight on the affected leg?
- Did your hip suddenly give out from under you?
- Did you experience sudden swelling or intense pain in the hip?
- Have home treatments like rest, ice, heat, or over-the-counter pain medications failed to improve your symptoms?
Seek immediate medical attention if you experience:
- Loss of sensation or increased pain when moving the hip
Little Secrets For Hip Bursitis Relief
Regardless of the root cause, one thing is certain, you want that pain to stop now!
Ive compiled a list of easy ways you can find pain relief right now.
1. Stretching Exercises
You might be thinking that you cant exercise because of the pain, but the following stretching exercises will provide some pain relief so that you can do other exercises that will hurt less, such as swimming or water aerobics. Try some of the following stretches:
- Iliotibial Band Stretch
If you are unsure how to do these exercises, a quick online search will provide photos, instructions, and even videos of how to do these stretches properly.
2. Sleep Secrets
One thing that is super annoying about hip bursitis is that you cant sleep on your side! Getting a good nights rest is important, so what can you do to sleep so that your hip doesnt hurt?
If you love to sleep on your side, you can try placing a small pillow under your hip or between the knees to reduce pressure. If you like lying on your back, you can put a small wedge pillow under your knees or use it to cushion the hip.
Ladies, if you have a desk job and you find that just getting in and out of the chair to be painful, try the sit like a man routine.
Position your legs at the 11 oclock and 1 oclock position and stand up without putting your legs or feet together. This reduces the distance that the tendon will move across the bursa and make getting up, or sitting down, more comfortable.
4. Ice Therapy
5. Heat Therapy
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Hydrotherapy And Physical Therapy
Hydrotherapy is a form of physical rehabilitation that can encourage movement and uses temperature and pressure to encourage blood flow throughout the body. This can reduce pain in the hips.
Standard physical therapy treatments can also help reduce hip pain in patients with arthritis, strains, tears, tendinitis, and other less severe hip problems.
What Causes Osteoarthritis Of The Hip Joint
The causes of osteoarthritis of the hip are not known. Factors that may contribute include joint injury, increasing age, and being overweight.
In addition, osteoarthritis can sometimes be caused by other factors:
- The joints may not have formed properly.
- There may be genetic defects in the cartilage.
- The person may be putting extra stress on their joints, either by being overweight or through activities that involve the hip.
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What To Do Next
If your pain is not resolving with the appropriate rest/mobility and OTC painkillers after a few weeks it would be advisable to see your GP for further assessment.
You should also go to see your GP if you are having hip pain and experiencing any of the following:
- A new fever or rash
- Sudden onset hip pain and you have sickle cell anaemia
- There is a pain in both hips and other joints
There are also a few situations where it is appropriate to go straight to A& E or seek immediate medical attention in case there is a more serious problem:
- Hip pain caused by a serious fall or accident
- You are worried about a fracture or dislocation of the hip joint
- There is significant bruising or bleeding
- You are not able to put any weight through the hip at all
- You are not able to move the hip at all
- You have a high temperature and are feeling very unwell
How Is Hip Pain Treated
Treatment for hip pain typically depends on how much pain youre in and what is causing your discomfort. Mild injuries to muscles, tendons or bursa sacs often improve with rest, ice and anti-inflammatory medications. You can often follow the RICE methodrest, ice, compression and elevation. This form of treatment can be done at home and it can sometimes relieve some of your hip pain. If necessary, doctors can usually repair tendons and labrum tears with minimally invasive surgery. More serious hip conditions may require a total hip replacement.
Arthritis treatment may include medication and physical therapy. Doctors can usually treat DDH and Perthes disease with special braces, casts and slings that keep the joint in place while the hip heals. Some children may need surgical repair.
No matter what caused the pain, physical therapy exercises can strengthen your hip muscles and relieve discomfort.
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Ways To Prevent Hip Pain
Kevin Perry, an orthopedic surgeon with Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN, says there are many ways to prevent hip pain.
âIn general, the best way to prevent hip pain as we age is to maintain a healthy weight, participate in a regular, low-impact exercise program, and to maintain strong and healthy bones,â he says.
âThere are certain things that I think are really good for hips specifically from an exercise perspective,â Davidovitch says. âGetting on a bicycle is very good for all of your joints below the waist — your hip, your knee, your ankle — but definitely for the hip.â
Other things you can do to prevent hip pain include:
- Clear walking areas in your house to prevent falls.
- Warm up and cool down before and after you work out.
- Donât work out if youâre in a lot of pain.
- Keep a healthy weight, since extra weight can put more pressure on your joints.
- Exercise regularly.
- Stretch every day to keep up the flexibility in your hip.
- Use a walker or cane if you need it.
- Wear good shoes.
Perry also suggests avoiding high-impact sports that put pressure on your joints. High impact sports include:
What Causes Hip Pain
Hip pain can be caused by arthritis, injuries, pinched nerves, or other causes, like cancer. Where youâre having hip pain can help pinpoint the cause. Chances are, youâll feel it in the inside of your hip or your groin. If you have pain near your upper thigh, the outside of your hip, or the outer part of your buttocks, the pain is probably because of another issue within the ligaments, muscles, tendons, or other tissues near your hip.
Roy I. Davidovitch, MD, the Julia Koch associate professor of orthopedic surgery at NYU Langone Health, says inflammation around the hip isnât uncommon. It often has to do with âaltered gait mechanics,â or how you move.
âThe most common thing that happens when you get older is you can get inflamed bursa,â Davidovitch says. If you have inflammation in your hipâs bursae, youâll probably feel it when you move.
âWhen they start to walk, it could irritate the bursa because of that imbalance, and thatâs usually the type of hip pain thatâs tender to the touch,â he says. âPeople feel that when theyâre walking, but also, they can push on the pain, and itâs right on the side of the hip. Itâs actually the bump on the side of the hip that most people call my hip.â
âIt can hurt with sitting, sleeping, walking, and itâs not the kind of pain that you can push on or touch. Itâs deeper inside. Iâve heard my patients describe it as like a toothache,â he says.
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Knees And Hips: A Troubleshooting Guide To Knee And Hip Pain
Do your knees or hips hurt? Most people will at some point have knee or hip pain because these large joints have a demanding task: they must bear the full weight of your body while at the same time allowing for a wide range of motion. Wear and tear, injury, and simple genetic predisposition can all contribute to knee or hip pain. This Special Health Report, Knees and Hips: A troubleshooting guide to knee and hip pain, covers a wide range of knee and hip conditions and describes in detail treatments, preventive strategies, and surgeries.
Common Causes Of Hip Pain In Women And How To Find Relief
When trying to analyse the cause of hip pain in women, it is important to think about any systems that could potentially be contributing to that pain. For example, the pain felt over the front of the hip, in the groin area, could be attributed to a gynaecological cause , an abdominal cause or a joint problem. Pain over the side of the hip and in the buttock area is more likely to be caused by a problem within the hip joint. However, all of these may also be caused by referred pain from a problem in the knee or lower back.
This article will focus more on the direct causes of hip pain caused by problems in and around the hip joint itself, and offer 5 top tips to help relieve hip pain caused by common joint problems. If you have any concerns that your hip pain may be caused by something other than the joint directly, you should seek advice from your GP.
Musculoskeletal pain is a significant contributor to ill health in the UK, with 25% of all GP consultations relating to joint and muscle pain. Of this, hip pain is a major contributor, appearing in the top three most commonly reported MSK problems.
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What Tests Are There
X-rays are often the best way of finding out whats wrong with your hip as they show the condition of the bones. They may also show problems in your pelvis which could explain your pain. Theyre not as useful for looking at the soft tissues around the joint.
A CT scan can often be very helpful to work out if the hip joint has an unusual shape. CT scans use x-rays to show sections or slices of the hip, which a computer then puts together to form a 3D image of the hip.
There are conditions where the socket of the hip can be very shallow, and a CT scan can show this.
MRI scans use radio waves to build a picture to show whats happening to the soft tissue, such as the muscles and tendons, inside your hip. Theyre particularly helpful for diagnosing the painful condition avascular necrosis, which reduces the flow of blood to the ends of bone, causing them to collapse .
If your doctor thinks your pain is caused by an infection or rheumatoid arthritis, blood tests can often help.