Trigger Point Therapy - Self Help Tips for Treating Gluteal Muscles
The pain from gluteal trigger points can be severe - so what can you do at home to help?
Trigger points are tight bands of muscle that form either slowly over time or sometimes quickly in response to injury or trauma.
In most cases these trigger points remain dormant after formation and are left undiscovered. Any symptoms (pain, referred pain, stiffness) are occasional and mild.
However, there are many circumstances in which these trigger points become and remain active, causing symptoms - often chronic symptoms - of pain and restricted movement.
The most unusual and perhaps interesting aspect of trigger points is that the symptoms that they cause, will often materialize in different part of the body.
Self Treatment of Trigger Points
Trigger points are sometime really easy to locate, especially when they form in muscles that are accessible, and where the symptoms are immediately felt as a response to sustained direct pressure.
Athletes for example, are often very adept at locating trigger points in their own muscles, but in most cases, it takes a trained therapist to use experienced palpation skills to accurately locate trigger points.
So, in an ideal scenario, self treatment for trigger points is always best performed as part of treatment being received from a trained massage or manual therapist.
Through treatment, your therapist will help you understand how to locate your trigger points, if necessary or recommended, and some of the various methods to safely apply self treatment - both to relieve symptoms and help speed up the healing process.
Working together with your therapist in this way will often improve the outcome and reduce the number of therapist visits that may be required. It also ensures that any self treatment you perform is done so within safe guidelines.
The bottom line on self help is to use common sense, and that it's always best to seek advice from a qualified healthcare provider before you start.
Types of Self Help Treatment for Trigger Points
Slow, deep stroking massage around the area of the trigger point can be helpful.
Pressure products, balls and foam rollers - where suitable - are often excellent for treatment of the general area of the trigger point.
Compression inhibition technique can be applied with caution (see above). This is basically where you apply pressure for a short period of time directly on the trigger point; release slowly; and repeat.
Use caution with any self help treatment and especially with any treatment that requires the application of direct pressure - such as Compresion inhibition technique.
Gluteal Trigger Points - Things to Consider
Regular stretching can help relieve the symptoms caused by trigger points. There are loads of simple stretches for the gluteal muscles (easy to find on this site and elsewhere online (www.youtube.com/nielasher) - whatever your age or level of fitness there's a glute stretch out there for you!
Try applying heat to relieve symptoms. Heat packs or wheat packs that are microwavable can work well. Try this after stretching.
Talk to your therapist about a Gait and Posture analysis. Often simple adjustments and improvement to posture can have great effect.
If symptoms are chronic they may sometimes disturb your sleep which in itself is likely to be unhealthy. Try sleeping pillow between or under your knees when sleeping.
Finally, do not sit for more than 25 minutes at a time. Don't be shy and talk to your employer if needed, but try to get up and walk around for 3-5 minutes every 25 minutes.
About Paul Townley
In the video above, physical therapist Paul Townley gives some brief tips on using the Backnobber to self treat trigger points in the gluteus maximus and medius muscles.
Active trigger points in the muscles are often associated with hip pain and dysfunction.
Paul holds a Masters Degree (MSc) in Neuromusculoskeletal medicine, and is a member of the Manipulative Association of Chartered Physiotherapists and the International Federation of Manipulative Therapy.
Paul is qualified as an ESP (Extended Scope Practitioner) and a university lecturer and teacher in the United Kingdom.
In a career spanning more than two decades Paul has worked with elite athletes (including Physiotherapist for Crystal Palace FC - EPL) and has provided specialist physiotherapy services and consultancy to the military.
About NAT Courses
As a manual therapist or exercise professional, there is only one way to expand your business - education!
Learning more skills increases the services that you offer and provides more opportunity for specialization.
Every NAT course is designed to build on what you already know, to empower you to treat more clients and grow your practice, with a minimal investment in time and money.
About Niel Asher Education
Niel Asher Education is a leading provider of distance learning and continued education courses.
Established in the United Kingdom in 1999, we provide course and distance learning material for therapists and other healthcare professionals in over 40 countries.
Our courses are accredited by over 90 professional associations and national accreditation institutions including the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM) and National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork (NCBTMB). Full details of all international course accreditations can be found on our website.
Printed course materials and other products offered on our websites are despatched worldwide from our 3 locations in the UK (London), USA (Pennsylvania) and Australia (Melbourne).
We are honored to have received the "Excellence in Education" Award from the National Association of Myofascial Trigger Point Therapists.
Since 1999 Niel Asher Education has won numerous awards for education and in particular for education and services provided in the field of trigger point therapy.
Award Winning Instructors
Niel Asher Healthcare course instructors have won a host of prestigious awards including 2 lifetime achievement honorees - Stuart Hinds, Lifetime Achievement Honoree, AAMT, 2015, and Dr. Jonathan Kuttner, MD, Lifetime Achievement Honoree, NAMTPT 2014.
If you are a qualified/licensed manual therapist or exercise/fitness professional you can expand your credentials with NAT certification.
In addition to national accreditation for continued education, each course that we offer includes "NAT Learning Credits". By taking and completing courses you can accumulate NAT credits to qualify for NAT certification.
There are currently 3 levels of NAT certification. Certifying NAT is a valuable way to show your clients that you take continued education seriously, and to promote your skills and qualifications.
Niel Asher Technique
Since 1999 the Niel Asher Technique for treating trigger points has been adopted by over 100,000 therapists worldwide, and has been applied to the treatment of a number of common musculoskeletal injuries.
The Niel Asher Technique for treating frozen shoulder was first introduced and published in 1997 and has been widely adopted by therapists and exercise professionals working within elite sports and athletics.
Worldwide Free Shipping
Most of our courses are available as either "Printed" or 'Download" editions. When you purchase a download edition, you receive immediate lifetime access to all course material. Course texts can be downloaded and printed if required.
When you purchase a "Printed" edition, you will also receive free access to the download edition.
We ship Worldwide from locations in the USA, UK, and Australia. Most items are despatched within 24 hours and shipping is FREE for all orders over US$50.
Where to Start?
We offer a range of over 50 courses, presented by some of the worlds leading manual therapists. All courses are reviewed annually, and new courses are regularly added.
Our courses are modular, and designed to build on what you already know. For more information, please visit our "Where to Start?" page.
This trigger point therapy blog is intended to be used for information purposes only and is not intended to be used for medical diagnosis or treatment or to substitute for a medical diagnosis and/or treatment rendered or prescribed by a physician or competent healthcare professional. This information is designed as educational material, but should not be taken as a recommendation for treatment of any particular person or patient. Always consult your physician if you think you need treatment or if you feel unwell.
Share this post