What are my Hip Flexor Muscles?
Your hip flexors are a group of muscles that run through your pelvis to the front of your thigh bone (femur). Their primary function is to bring your thighs towards your torso; if you are standing, your hip flexor muscles lift your leg to take a step forward. Just imagine how many times you make this movement when cross-country skiing!
When Hip Flexors Get Tight
Most problems with hip flexor muscles are due to a lack of flexibility. Spending the majority of your day in a seated position will make these muscles tight. Add in activities like hockey, skating or skiing, and it’s no wonder our hips feel sore at the start of the winter season.
Besides causing muscle tension or achiness, chronic tightness in your hip flexors can lead to lower back pain. If these powerful muscles become very tight, they can pull the pelvis forward, which may cause a feeling of compression in the lower back.
For a passive or sedentary person, daily stretching of the hip flexor muscles is essential in counteracting the effects of sitting all day. For those who enjoy sports like running or cross country skiing, stretching is key to maintaining performance, improving technique, and minimizing discomfort at the start of the season.