Not so Hip, to Hip!
Maybe you have bad X-Rays, ultrasounds, and diagnoses such as severe arthritis or bursitis that feel and sound gloomy.
Your hips are involved in movement in every direction, and everything you do. The biggest muscles in the centre of the body produce the power of your movements when that flows through your bones effortlessly. We do better when the bones are lined up well and naturally and easily transmit force, like dominos falling. When muscles are working too much and that force is lost in the transmission through the body, this effortful way causes heat, friction and wear and tear.
In the absence of flow the inefficiency, bad timing and disordered sequencing give rise to accumulated wear and tear, arthritis, stiffness and pain, and in the end to X-ray changes.
Then the vicious circle of muscle and less than optimal brain patterns perpetuate the wear and trouble. For example, weight shifts and balance that are so fundamental to your ease of movement in walking, running, jumping, bending, twisting, reaching........all lose their delightful ease and become more than exercise; just hard work..
That power produced by the bigger muscles needs the steering and directing through the bones by the deeper little muscles adjacent to the hip joint. It needs good brain organisation. Sometimes that is just a bit of updating, sometimes its revision. (Hip action is coordinated with the muscles of the pelvic floor, the muscles of the core, abdomen, the diaphragm and the back, the thighs and feet and ankles. Well…pretty much everything. When they combine with the perfect architecture of our bones, movement is trouble free.)
The hips being part of the trunk need the action of the whole trunk, chest, shoulders and arms to balance and counterbalance for the hip so that the power generated can be directed for example to the feet accurately and in good timing
Any glitches in how all these components combine to produce movement, reduces power and fluid transmission from your legs to the rest of your body, and vice versa. Hobbling, limping, favouring, guarding, sluggishness and straining are all by products of poor coordination with your hips, or more often of how hips, shoulders, ribs and balance mechanisms allcoordinate. Yes, even your eyes and the way you carry your head are involved. Everything is connected.
When the hip is organised to work in harmony with the ankle, the vertebrae and the ribs and the balance function of the neck and eyes, there is pleasurable easy movement. Power and effortless action in effortless running, walking, dancing, golfing, tennis, throwing, lifting and so on. Even when you have a diagnosis of gloom and doom. Movement improves, and the X-rays etc can stay the miserable same.
As your foot and ankle adjust to the ground, your hip is organised to produce the drive in just the right direction; but with a mismatch the effort just goes into the hip itself or overloads the adjacent muscles and tissues and aggravates pain and inflammation. Bursitis, arthritis, weakness, stiffness, limping, hobbling and favouring are all common difficulties that can be readily remedied with a wholistic approach to the mechanics and coordination of the hip and it's team members..
Excessive muscle action shortens your system, increases friction and decreases leveraging power. Lack of awareness and disorganisation that goes with poor quality of movement, (characterised by excess effort, clumsiness and shorter stride length) can be easily addressed when the attention is widened beyond where the pain draws your mind.
You'll get better results when you look beyond the local features, and apply attention to your whole system so that everything contributes in harmony and with good timing and sequencing.
Feldenkrais movement systems are some of the best ways to update your brains movement programs and patterns, because they are demand and stress free. You do what you can easily and improvement opens up. We all have a marvellous brain that doesn't have to be limited by painful habits of moving when we work with the system, not just the parts......
Recognising and redistributing effort can and does restore flow, ease and power; so that a painful limp can almost magically disappear, in a shorter time than you think.
It’s a case of work smarter to avoid having to work harder unnecessarily.
By developing awareness of better coordination and teamwork of your whole body, the local issues will be reduced or eliminated. Small sustainable changes to your habits of movement can eliminate symptoms blamed on aging and expecting to get worse. Light graceful balance and ease, bending, squatting, lifting and the like can become quickly and surprisingly easily your way of being.