Geeking out over the Psoas Plus a Tutorial
The psoas (pronounced so-az) is an amazing muscle. And we have two of them! They are attached to either side of the lumbar spine, run over the pelvis and the ball and socket joint of the hips and connects at the femur bone. This is a deep muscle that cannot be accessed in many places, which at times makes it seem a little magical and mystical.
The psoas muscle does so much for us, including housing major nerves and being the only muscle to connect the spine to the legs.
While this beautiful muscle does so much for us, at times it can do too much.
When we live our lives in certain positions most of the time our body adapts, including the psoas. When we live our lives with very little diversity of movement, our body adapts to this, and then when we go to stand or walk or run, we bring all our compensation pattern with us. Meaning when you stand, the tight psoas will shift your pelvis, legs and back into not optimal positions. It might possibly thrust the pelvis forward, taking your posterior leg muscles (your butt and hamstrings) out of the equation. Decreases hip range of motion and mobility and puts strain on your low back are just a few examples.
When we don't stand in alignment, we are no longer using our bones to hold us up, but our muscles, and one major muscle we end up relying on quite a bit is the psoas muscle. And at the end of the day, our muscles are designed to hold us up long term, which fatigues them and results in poor blood flow and lack of oxygen in many areas of the body, including the digestive system, immune system and the pelvic floor. The psoas is deeply connected to our nervous system and how we process trauma and fears, not something I specialize in, but find extremely fascinating.
There is hope though! Through daily adjustments in our alignment and how we sit, stand and move, we can impact the shape of our bodies and muscles.
My favorite move to do at the end of a day or after a workout or walk is the psoas release.
If you can start incorporating this into your week, doing it for about 5 minutes anywhere from 3-7 days a week, you can start shifting things in your own body! This is the type of thing I geek out about!