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Wide Band of Pain Across the Top of the Hips

Table of Contents

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getting relief on your own.

How People Describe This Pain Pattern

These people complain of a band of pain across the top of their hips. I ask them to be specific. Is it all the way across your hips? Is it a small strip in the middle? There are several patterns in this area that produce similar pain patterns. They open their fingers a few inches and, using both hands, trace a pattern of pain across the low back that extends across the sacrum and over the top of the hips.

At this point, I have them stroke an ice cube over the lower abdomen, just above the pubic bone. Then, I have the patient lay back on the table to stretch their abdomen open. Then, they let it close. I have them repeat this stretch a few times. They are often surprised by the relief.

One could also do the bridging exercise shown in the self-care post. But, again, people seem surprised when the pain dramatically reduces or is completely gone.

These people often have some fullness in the lower abdomen or have over-worked their abdominals with exercise. Some of them complain of intestinal distress, and some do not. I do not find it to be a predictable symptom, as some texts indicate.

How You Activate and Intensify This Pain Pattern

These people have some stress to their rectus abdominus from exercise, weight gain, surgery, motor vehicle accident, etc.

I find that these older clients often have bloating or recent weight gain. That may have come from intestinal distress or constipation. It is common to see this after holidays, weddings, or bar mitzvahs where the participant is active and over-eats.

This trigger point can get aggravated by over-exercising the abdomen in the more active bodies. The obvious culprit is crunches, leg lifts, or other abdominal work, but I have also seen this aggravated by cycling or rowing.

At times, this irritation follows an accident that twists the pelvis creating joint problems that perpetuate the trigger point. In that case, the back treatment is often unsuccessful.

The Musculoskeletal Anatomy Behind Your Pain

Musculoskeletal Anatomy

About these Illustrations…

This muscle fits into thick sheaths of connective tissue. Learn more in this post about the anatomy of the rectus abdominus.

Getting Relief on Your Own

Clinically Proven
Self-Care Strategies

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

Therapy Notes for Massage and Bodywork

Better Bodywork
Through Shared Expertise

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

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Tony Preston has a practice in Atlanta, Georgia, where he sees clients. He has written materials and instructed classes since the mid-90s. This includes anatomy, trigger points, cranial, and neuromuscular.

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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 include more patterns with better self-care. Meanwhile, there may be formatting, content presentation, and readability inconsistencies. Until we get older posts updated, please excuse our mess.