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Dead Butt Syndrome

Get your butt into gear with Kinesiology!

… over the years I have worked with many people suffering with lower back and hip pain, frequently associated with weak gluteal (“butt”) muscles and tight or over-working hip flexors (the muscles that lift your thigh to move your leg forward).

This syndrome has been dubbed “dead butt syndrome” or gluteal amnesia by mainstream medicine and if these issues aren’t addressed, the chances of long-term relief from pain is unlikely.

Dead butt syndrome commonly occurs in people who sit for extended periods. The glutes aren’t designed to bear weight for long periods of time and blood flow is restricted when tissues are compressed in a seated position. The glute muscles then start to shut down or ‘fall asleep’ and lose the ability to work when needed.

These muscles should be incredibly powerful but when they aren’t working properly other smaller, weaker muscles are called on to do the job. This causes strain on those smaller muscles and associated joints.

The constant flexed position of sitting can also cause the muscles at the front of the hip to become tight. The glute muscles are then unable to move through a full range of motion, causing them to become weaker.

You may be surprised to know ‘dead butt syndrome’ is not exclusive to sedentary people. It can also be a problem for active people who don’t engage their gluteal muscles enough due to poor technique, lack of flexibility or lack of awareness. Again, when the larger gluteal muscles are not doing their job, smaller muscles take over and when you consider the repetitive action of running, for example, you can understand how these muscles can become injured from overuse.

Since one of the gluteal muscles (gluteus medius) normally helps stabilise the pelvis and hip joint, active people can be prone to back and hip pain and also to knee and ankle issues, as the body tries to compensate for the weakness.

I often see exercises meant to stimulate and strengthen weak glutes done with such poor technique that they aggravate rather than help the problem they were meant to fix.

I use Kinesiology techniques to balance the muscles. I am able to stimulate or ‘wake up’ weak muscles, as well as to calm down and release the tight or over-worked muscles. This enables your butt to do the work it is designed to do and allows your body to move efficiently and effectively without pain.

Then we can then work on some specific Pilates exercises that will help you maintain the correct muscle balance so you move through life pain-free.

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