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Self Care – Tensor Fascia Lata

Activities to Change or Avoid:

Avoid sitting while keeping the hip sharply flexed for long periods. This will allow the muscle to become tight, making it stiff, and more likely to compress the nerve when the hip is straightened. Doing this while you are wearing tight pants, like jeans, it will compress the nerve and create the tingling while still seated.

Sleeping in a fetal position tends to make the muscle stiff thigh tingle and numb upon waking.

Sports activities that have agressive or very imbalanced hip flexion with tilt like skiiing, running (or walking) on the beach, volleyball, etc. can aggravate this condition as this muscle is very involved in balancing the hip while you are upright.

Sitting at a counter, massage table or public transportation without adequate leg room or with your legs crossed for long periods can aggravate a latent trigger point.

or with your legs crossed for long For longer lasting relief:

Upward Facing Dog, Cobra, Back Bends and other poses that extend the hips will stretch the tensor fascia lata.

Bridge Pose by YogaOutlet

Bridges are better as they are more active in the extension of the hip and use reciprocal inhibition and train the opposing muscles to engage. They also work better for older clients. Do them following the AIS guidelines. Keep your knees together and gently raise the hips a bit more on each rep until you can’t see your knees.

To balance and strengthen the hips:

Walking lunges are great to retrain the movement of the hips, strengthen the hamstrings, strengthen the erectors and lengthen the hip flexors that support the shortened TFL. Make sure that the knee is behind the hip at the bottom of the movement.

Do 5 sets of 12 with about one minute of rest in between.

Does another Self-Care post
better match your pain?

Here is the post about the trigger point pattern associated with these Self-Care activities.

You may find information that better serves you in other posts about the front of the thigh.

This post is also about this trigger point. You may find a post that better matches your pattern in posts about sciatica-like patterns down the leg.

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Tony Preston has a practice in Atlanta, Georgia, where he sees clients. He has written and taught about anatomy, trigger points, and cranial therapies since the mid-90s.

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*This site is undergoing significant changes. We are reformatting and expanding the posts to make them easier to read. The result will also be more accessible and will include more patterns with better self-care. In the meanwhile, there may be inconsistencies in formatting, content presentation, and readability. Until we get older posts updated, please excuse our mess.