The Psoas is one of the most important hip flexor muscles that you have. It’s the small, mostly verticle muscle that runs right along your hip on either side. The reason it is so important is that you use it whenever you lift your leg or rotate your leg externally, which I’m sure you realize now that you do a lot more than you thought you did now that your experiencing psoas muscle pain. For a full anatomy and to find out how the psoas interacts with other hip flexor muscles please visit our hip flexor anatomy page.
Causes of Psoas Muscle Pain
The psoas is like any other hip flexor injury really, and should be treated as such. There are many different mechanisms that can lead to injury, but they can usually be traced back to a trauma (a sudden pull or strain) or weakness that overtime causes increasing pain in your psoas.
How to Fix Psoas Muscle Pain
Alleviating your pain will depend largely on what caused it. Starting with trauma there are two ways it could occur. You may have over-extended your leg trying to do something which caused the trauma, but it could also occur in a normal range of motion. If your psoas is tight even a movement that doesn’t seem extreme could be to strain your psoas and cause considerable pain.
Either way you are going to have to go through the typical hip flexor injury treatment process. However, if your injury was due to tightness you want to prevent any future re-occurences and can do so by performing different psoas muscle stretches on a regular basis after you are fully healed (stretching while hurt can make it worse).
On the other hand if you have a weak psoas you will often find yourself picking up aches and strains on a regular basis which can add up over time. To fix this you should both perform hip flexor strengthening exercises and psoas stretches.