The body is like a machine designed to work very specifically and when it doesn’t work the way it is designed, it begins to break down, much like a car or any machine that requires upkeep. If you know how your body works, it is much easier to prevent it from breaking down and minimize general wear and tear. One way to start learning about your body is to identify your pains and figure out why they are there and what started the problem.
Groin and hip pain are two very common types of pain that occur in the body. Hip pain can be caused from a number of factors almost all involving fascia (a connective tissue), muscle imbalance and often weakness. Your hip is a large bone making up one third of the pelvis (the other hip with sacrum in between are the other two thirds). When you are born the hip is made up of three bones that will fuse into one when you start to stand up and walk. The three bones fuse in the center of a cup that the leg bone sits into.
Hip pain is often connected to a long tract of connective tissue called the iliotibial band, or IT band. This connective tissue is way tougher and has less give than muscle. It is much less accommodating of bad posture than muscle. Muscle more or less happily moves with you into bad patterns. Connective tissue is not so forgiving and as a result of our poor posture the IT band gets pulled towards the back plane of the body, in the opposite direction than it is supposed to be moving.
Groin and hip pain are often associated with running and the IT band is one of the main culprits. Running is a great way to reinforce correct habits and we recommend it as an excellent way to learn new patterns and retrain your body successfully. If the IT band is forever pulling backwards when it is supposed to wrap forwards it will suffer in the long run. While it is not a guarantee that your hip pain is from the IT band it is highly likey and a good place to start in trying to figure out the cause of your pain.
Let’s look at one possible reason for having groin pain. To start it is important to know that a groin is an area of the body as opposed to a particular muscle. When we refer to a pulled groin we are often but not always referring to a muscle of the inner thigh (adductor). The groin is the area of the pelvis where the leg meets the hip. There should always be a soft pocket in the groin when standing.
Groin pain often manifests in an odd wrapping sensation that goes from the pubis (part of the hip bone) and moves up and around towards the lower back. I think that this pain is related to the psoas muscle. There is a ligament that connects from the pubic bone to the outer hip called the inguinal ligament and it is essentially strapping the psoas muscle down onto the rim of the pubic bone. When the psoas is tight or inflamed it can push on this ligament which in turn cause the wrapping sensation that you will feel as groin pain.
These are just two possible causes of your groin and hip pain. Unfortunately there are numerous others. It is our belief that the more you know about your body and why it feels the way it does, the more likely you are to heal and feel better.