Hip Pain from Running: Causes and Treatments

Athletes often have to deal with hip pain running, which can keep them from running for a few weeks. It is important to identify what's causing pain to select the best treatment option.

Hip pain is among so many issues athletes have to face while training. The inflammation within soft tissues or tendons is the underlying cause in most cases, but some athletes have to experience this pain due to overuse syndromes. It is important to never overlook hip pain from running and take steps to correct the issue as soon as possible to prevent a chronic condition from developing. Here are some of the causes and treatment options for hip pain after running.

What Causes Hip Pain from Running?

You may experience hip pain from running due to a number of different reasons. Some of them are mentioned here:

1.       Bursitis

If you're experiencing a dull ache or have tight leg muscles, this could be due to the inflammation of the small, fluid-filled sacs called bursa that lubricate your joints. The condition is called bursitis and is usually caused by a tight hamstring or overuse. You usually experience dull ache or rubbing, burning sensation usually on the outer side of your hip. Stretching your hamstring may help with this situation.

2.       Stress Fracture

If you've been running on concrete and are mostly experiencing pain on the inside of your hip, this could be due to a stress fracture. This usually causes a throbbing pain usually in your groin area.

3.       Injury

If you've been experiencing pain with a clicking feeling after a hip fall or twist, this could be due to a cartilage tear. You may have to see a sports specialist to confirm if a cartilage tear is the underlying cause of your hip pain running.

4.       Iliotibial Band Syndrome

If you're experiencing pain in your hip as well as in the outer side of your knee, this could be a sign of Iliotibial band syndrome, in which your ligament around your thigh gets irritated. Running on the same track or on the same side of the track may cause this problem.

5.       Insertional Tendonitis

One of the causes of hip pain running is insertional tendonitis, which usually cause problems in your hip flexor, the muscle used to control your knee.

6.       Muscle Weakness

If you're feeling pain in your hip as well as in your feet and knees, it could be due to muscle weakness. Performing some hip abductor strengthening exercises may help correct the problem.

7.       Over-Training

Your hip pain may be due to micro-trauma to the muscles caused by over-training. If you don't pay attention to these minor issues, they may turn into muscle strain over time.

8.       Other Possible Causes of Hip Pain

In addition to the causes mentioned above, you may also experience hip pain running due to some other causes. For instance:

  • If you're experiencing pain in the inner thigh and the hip, this could be due to an adductor muscle strain or pull.
  • You may notice hip pain if you're suffering from osteoarthritis, a type of arthritis caused mainly by degeneration of your hip joint.
  • A direct impact to your iliac crest of the pelvis may cause a hip pointer injury. It can be quite painful and may become serious when causing bleeding into your hip abductor muscles.
  • Some athletes experience hip pain due to hamstring injuries. These injuries are more common with athletes involved in sporting activities that require powerful decelerations, accelerations, and lots of running.
  • You may be suffering from piriformis syndrome that not only causes hip pain but also leads to sciatica in athletes.
  • A direct fall onto your coccyx may cause tailbone injuries and produce several symptoms including pain in your hip.

Considerations

It is worth mentioning that hip pain may or may not start directly in your hip area. It may start in your upper thighs or hurt your lower section of the groin. You will experience hip pain if you don't pay attention to these minor issues. Sometimes, the pain you experience is due to issues related to your lower back. It is therefore a good idea to consult with your doctor to confirm what's causing hip pain running in your case.

How to Deal with Hip Pain from Running

You can try several home remedies as well as exercises to deal with your hip pain after running.

1.     Use Ice

You may consider using ice packs for about 20 minutes soon after you've finished running. Taking some time off of running is another good idea if the pain is severe.

2.     Use Heat

You may consider using heat packs if your hip pain is due to arthritis. A hot bath or shower will also help soothe your joint. It is a good idea to avoid using heat if your hip pain is due to bursitis.

3.     Perform the Following Exercises

Get in touch with your doctor to identify the real cause and find a treatment option. You may also consider working with a doctor of chiropractic to improve your body's healing mechanism. Below are some exercises you can try.

  • Hip Abduction

Stand in a comfortable position and raise your leg towards the side. Be sure to use a table or chair for balance and keep your knee/back straight all the time. Squeeze your thigh and hip abductors when lifting your leg.

  • Hip Flexion

Stand in a comfortable position and lift your knee slowly to touch it with your chest. Repeat at least 10 times.

  • Hip Extension

Lie on your back on a bench with your hip at the end of the bench. While leaving the leg on the side of your injured hip hanging towards the floor, raise your other leg towards your chest until you notice a stretch. Hold the posture for a couple of seconds before returning to normal.

Here are more exercises for hip pain after running:

How to Prevent Hip Pain and Running

Once you have recovered from an injury and your hip pain is no longer there, it is still a good idea to take preventative measures when running again. Be sure to warm up well before your running sessions and cool down after you have completed a session. Buy good quality running shoes and buy a new pair of shoes after every 350-500 miles. Avoid running on uneven surfaces to prevent hip pain running.

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