Back Pain? Anatomy Lesson From A Wine Barrel: Hip Flexors and the Core…




Hey guys, what’s up? it’s Stephen Dunn here from CORE Therapy and Pilates… it’s about 11:40, Tuesday and what I wanted to do is have a little quick discussion. This is a discussion I have in here very commonly and it has to do with the hip flexors and the core…

Now what I find with the vast majority of my clients these days is they come in with back pain or neck pain and they have their hip flexors, their psoas muscle and their iliacus muscle is very, very tight and it’s pulling them into this sway or this increased lordosis or an arch… now what I want to talk about a little bit is what’s causing it and how do we change it.

Okay, now what’s causing that sway is the hip flexors, again it’s the psoas and the iliacus. The psoas is going to be represented here by this yellow band, it’s a thera-band. The iliacus is going to sit right in here on the pelvis bone there. Now what we’re going to talk about is a way to think about how we want the core to work and not the hip flexors because the hip flexors in my clients are overworking in most of the cases. I’m going to use an analogy of a wine barrel and what I want to work is this barrel, now this isn’t a wine barrel, this is a little grid foam roller type of thing. What we’re going to think about is this barrel is going to represent the core muscles and what should be working…okay, now if we put that barrel right there the bottom of the barrel represents the pelvic floor, the top of the barrel represents the diaphragm, the front of the barrel represents the deep abdominal muscle, the transverse abdominus and the back of the barrel represents the multifidus, or multifidii that run up and down right here…

What I find most commonly is that the barrel is not working on my clients and the hip flexor, which sits right in the middle of the barrel, is basically doing all the work. So we need to get the hip flexor to turn off and we need to get the barrel to turn on and if we do that we have a really good chance of solving back pain…

There’s a lot of talk about the hip flexors, the psoas and whatnot and yes they are very involved but if you stretch the psoas only you’re not doing very much. You have to stretch this guy (the hip flexors), I think you have to release it, it’s a little different than stretching it, then you have to strengthen the barrel. With that shift and that change of getting out of the hip flexors and into your actual proper core, you have a much better chance of success in managing your back pain…

So that’s the story of the wine barrel and how it relates to the core: the transverse abdominus, the pelvic floor, the diaphragm and the multifidus and how the hip flexor is represented by this little PVC pipe right in the center of the barrel. So again we want the barrel working not the hip flexor…

Alright guys, that’s it for today… I hope that makes sense, comment below (on youtube) with any questions and I’ll get back with some answers to you…

Take care have a great day… Bye now…

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Co-Owner / Physical Therapist at CORE Therapy and Pilates
Stephen Dunn, a pioneer in physical therapy, merges Pilates and Gyrotonic approaches with hands-on therapy for comprehensive injury prevention and rehabilitation. His innovative methods prioritize holistic well-being.
Stephen Dunn
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