Ever get a pain in your side hip, hip flexor, lower back, not quite-sure-area-around-there, and out of seemingly nowhere, it starts to hurt to forward bend or even walk? Sometimes this mystery ailment that can be so hard to pin down is actually as simple as your pelvis rotating on your sacrum, which causes them to come out of alignment.
Lots of us have loosey-goosey sacrums. Who knew? I sure didn’t until I met Physical Therapist extraordinaire, Toni McGinley, PT, MA, SST, Founder and Senior Physical Therapist at Alta NYC. This amazing woman has nursed my body back to help after a hamstring tear, a meniscus tear, and many other bumps along my road – she has been a life saver for me, and has helped me find a stronger, more supple body along the way.
This super-easy, super-safe remedy has helped me on a number of occasions, and it 's helped a boatload of my students and clients as well. All you need is a yoga block and a yoga strap, and you can set that sacrum of yours back in its place so you can going on moving and living your awesome amazing life without restriction.
Move One: Hip Abduction / Pressing Out
Fasten your yoga strap so that it will be taut around your thighs at your natural hip’s distance. Lie on your back. Bend your knees, take your feet and legs inside of your yoga strap, and place your feet hip distance apart on the ground. Arrange the strap so that it's under your knees and on your thighs.
Keeping your sacrum flat on the ground, and not lifting your pelvis, press as firmly as you can with your thighs into the strap for 10 seconds. Keeping the strap around your thighs, release the pressure, so your thighs are lightly holding the strap in place for 10 seconds. Repeat this twice more, then remove the strap.
Move Two: Hip Adduction / Pressing In
Lie on your back. Bend your knees and place your feet hip distance apart on the ground. Take a yoga block and place it at the medium width or longest width in between your thighs then release your arms to the ground on either side of you. (Determine block setting to what is closest to your natural hip’s distance.)
Keeping your sacrum flat on the ground, and not lifting your pelvis, press as firmly as you can with your thighs into the block for 10 seconds. Keeping the block between your thighs, release the pressure, so your thighs are lightly holding the block for 10 seconds. Repeat this twice more, then remove the block.
If your pubic bone is not in line, you'll feel light pops on the “bikini line” — the “V” on your inner thighs where briefs would outline. This set of isometric holds is called the "shotgun technique," and it's used to reset the pubic symphysis.
Don’t try to force any pops, and don’t forget to breathe! This is about alleviating pressure, not creating more. If this doesn’t work the first time, try again several times. If you are experiencing serious pain, go see a health care professional! I am decidedly not that; I only aim to share a set of safe, easy moves that have saved me, and my clients, on numerous occasions. Hope this helps!