Best Exercises for Gluteal Tendinopathy

A woman performing her Gluteal Tendinopathy exercises

Gluteal tendinopathy is characterized by lateral (outside) hip pain and tenderness.  The pain can refer down the outside of the thigh.  It is often misdiagnosed as trochanteric bursitis, however, recent research has found that the pain is due to a breakdown in collagen of the gluteus medius and/or gluteus minimus tendons. These muscles perform the task of taking your hip away from your body (abduction), hip rotation and assist with pelvic stability.  

The condition affects both inactive and active people and is particularly prevalent in females (4:1 over males) over the age of 50.  Symptoms are aggravated by lying on the painful side (although it can also be painful lying on the non-painful side), walking, climbing stairs, running and prolonged sitting and standing.

As the hip and buttock can feel tight, it can be tempting to stretch this area.  This, however, can be counterproductive.  The gluteal muscles and tendons are often weak and subject to compression and actually require strengthening in a guided progressive manner.  This often starts with low tensile load isometric exercises.  Isometric exercises add resistance without movement.  A few simple examples of early isometric exercises for Gluteal Tendinopathy are shown below.

Gluteal Tendinopathy Exercises

An example of a Gluteal Tendinopathy Exercise called Supine lying hip abduction
Supine lying hip abduction
An demonstration of a Gluteal Tendinopathy Exercise called standing hip abduction
Standing hip abduction against the wall
An demonstration of a Gluteal Tendinopathy Exercise called Bridge

An assessment with a physiotherapist is also an important part of the management.  The subsequent treatment may then include manual therapy, dry needling and an exercise program specific to your current condition.

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