Body by Amy, LLC

The Psoas Muscle

The psoas, along with the iliacus, make up your hip flexor: aka, the system that allows your leg to swing forward when you run. While you’ve probably heard the term “hip flexor” countless times, you may be somewhat unfamiliar with the psoas - until today 😉. I’m going to talk a little about it because if it’s not properly prehabbed or rehabbed, it can cause some issues - and my chiro seems to think it may be contributing to my low back pain & the fact that even with almost daily adjustments, we’re not making much progress.

Every single time you lift your knee, your psoas contracts; and every time your leg swings back, it lengthens. Thus, it’s getting a LOT of use, and even more than average if you’re a runner. Our bodies are very intuitive & simply put, amazing, so, when we are dealing with some sort of imbalance in our pelvic or lower spine area, our psoas literally shrinks to create tension & compensate for that imbalance. How do we keep our psoas from shrinking? Well, for one, strength training. Make sure you’re concentrating on your core, your glutes, and your hips - which all runners should do anyway! - to correct any muscular imbalances you may have and keep your psoas functioning properly. And second, start to incorporate psoas myofascial release into your foam rolling routine (best to do with a lacrosse ball). You can stretch it too! Google “psoas stretches” & you’ll find tons of examples. Moral of the story: don’t neglect this powerful muscle like I did! It’s an easy one to forget about but it’s significant 💪🏼