Pain Along One Side of the Sacrum

Your Pain Pattern,
What Aggravates It,

The Underlying Anatomy
How to Get Relief,
and more…

How People Describe This Pain Pattern

These people complain of pain up and down their sacrum on one side. When I ask where it hurts, they straighten their fingers and place their index and thumb along their sacrum, slightly to one side.

They complain of pain when bending forward. It may be dull or sharp, depending on how long they have let it go and what they have done to remedy it. It hurts when it presses into a chair or when it is touched with light or deep touch. The pain in sacrum is dominant, and they seldom complain about the pain in the leg, even when they are asked directly.

This is a fairly common pattern and varies in its intensity. When it is very involved, it creates the pain that extends into the upper thigh and feels sharp, like something is pulled or injured. I’ve had this myself from time to time, including earlier this year. It can linger when it is ignored but can also be resolved quickly when properly addressed.

How You Activate and Intensify This Pain Pattern


For younger or more athletic clients, this is often caused by a sports injury, slip on the ice or motor vehicle accident that jars the hip.

As clients get older, these muscles are some of the first to atrophy in as clients get into their late 30s and early 40s. They are more prone to this problem from a simpler twist while getting into the car or sleeping in an awkward position. It may also occur during heavy lifting while bending a the waist, instead of squatting to use legs. The back is more fragile at this age and the client is adapting to w stiffer low back with less flexible joints.

The Musculoskeletal Anatomy Behind Your Pain

Effective relief starts with an understanding of the anatomy.
About the coloring of the illustrations…

Multifidi and rotatores are interspinous muscles that manage tension and balance between vertebrae.

Getting Relief on Your Own

Clinically Proven
Self-Care Recommendations.

This post has strategies for getting relief on your own. Explore how to change your activities, stretch, and other strategies that relieve the pain associated with this trigger point.

Treatment Notes for Therapists

Better Bodywork
Through Shared Expertise.

This post has techniques, tips, treatment routines, and anatomy illustrations to improve the bodyworker’s approach.

This site is undergoing changes. Starting in early 2020, we began changing the format of the posts to include more extensive self-care, illustrations, therapist notes, anatomy, and protocols. We’d love your feedback. We are adding posts and converting the old posts as quickly as time permits.

Weekly Featured Post

Pain relief that is
quicker and more effective
than traditional stretching.

This post covers the basics of Ice-and-Stretch, a tool that is used extensively in these posts combined with Active Isolated Stretching and Yoga poses.

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 major changes. We are reformatting and expanding the posts to make it easier to read, more accessible, and
to include more patterns with better self-care. In the meanwhile, there will be inconsistency in formatting, content, and readability until we get the old posts updated. Please excuse our mess.