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Gluteus Minimus Pain - What It Feels Like And How To Fix It

Gluteus Minimus pain is a sneaky, gnarly phenomenon. The Gluteus Minimus, very similar to the Gluteus Medius muscle, can be a real nuisance and a major contributor to your lower back pain. Here is my experience with what causes Gluteus Minimus pain and how to fix it.

gluteus minimus pain muscle anatomy

Gluteus Minimus Muscle

 

What Is The Gluteus Minimus Muscle?

The Gluteus Minimus is a deep, small, powerful glute muscle that lies deep in the buttocks. Gluteus Minimus, you may have guessed by its name, is smaller and lies underneath its neighbors Gluteus Medius and Gluteus Maximus. The main functions of Gluteus Minimus, similar to the Medius, are to support the body while standing on one leg and swing the leg outward in hip abduction.

 

Why Should I Care About Gluteus Minimus Pain?

Gluteus Minimus pain is an easily overlooked phenomenon. Your typical Gluteus Minimus pain patterns share symptoms of other muscle pains and vertebral issues, so Gluteus Minimus pain as a root often gets overlooked. However, I recommend Gluteus Minimus pain relief as one of the first tactics to eliminate your pain because the process is non-invasive, low cost, low risk, and could potentially eliminate the majority of your problems.

gluteus minimus pain sitting

A *Possible* Victim Of Gluteus Minimus Pain

 

Gluteus Minimus Pain Pattern

The Gluteus Minimus pain pattern is quite predictable. If you resonate with any of these symptoms, keep reading to learn how to combat your Gluteus Minimus pain in a short time.

gluteus minimus pain pattern

Gluteus Minimus Pain Pattern [1]

As shown above, the Gluteus Minimus pain pattern can span across a great portion of the backside. Its pattern down the leg can have Gluteus Minimus pain mistaken as sciatica [1].

Gluteus Minimus Pain Symptoms:

  • Difficulty and/or pain while standing on one leg [1]
  • A constant, dull, nagging pain in the Gluteus Minimus Pain Pattern above
  • Pain with prolonged standing [1]
  • Deep, achy buttock pain potentially down the leg to the ankle [2]

Gluteus Minimus Pain Causes:

Pain caused by the Glutes Minimus muscle is often related to a single high-impact event. Falls, heavy lifts and sports can cause immediate Gluteus Minimus trigger points and tension - which feels like deep, aching pain [2].

In addition, lower-impact motions done repeatedly can also cause Gluteus Minimus pain. Activities like repeated sitting, standing, or sitting with your wallet in the same back pocket can develop pain via the "straw that broke the camel's back" principle.

This video does a great job of explaining practically what Gluteus Minimus pain is and how to fix it right at home:

 

Gluteus Minimus Pain Treatment

The majority of Gluteus Minimus pain can be treated through proper deep tissue massage and trigger point therapy release. This can be done by the hands of a physical or massage therapist, or at home with a purposefully made tool like QL Claw. I love QL Claw for Gluteus Minimus pain treatment because you can use it exactly where and when you need it, right in the comfort of your own home. In addition, you can use the QL Claw on many other low back, hip, and glute pain muscles including the Quadratus Lumborum and Iliacus. 

To achieve Gluteus Minimus pain relief, massage the area for 2-3 minutes on each side, 2-3 times per day for 3 days. Focus on tender spots and iron them out like you are physically working out muscle knots.

Gluteus Minimus Pain Relief - QL Claw

Gluteus Minimus Pain Treatment Using QL Claw

 

Gluteus Minimus Pain Prevention

Once you have massaged out all of your Gluteus Minimus tension and pain (if there is still pain present - turn your attention to other muscles that could be at play), there is still work to do to ensure you are resilient and do not re-trigger Gluteus Minimus pain.

You want to stretch and strengthen the entire glutes, not just Minimus, to ensure you have the pliability, strength, and endurance to do whatever you want to do without Gluteus Minimus pain holding you back. For this, I recommend these Gluteus Minimus stretches as well as these Gluteus Minimus exercises. 

 

Additional Resources:

Flexible Back (Stretching): The complete stretching program and principles for breaking through your stiffness contributing to pain. Gluteus Minimus stretches are one of many tools utilized in this program:

  

Back Of Steel (Strengthening): The total strengthening regimen for building up every weak point in an underdeveloped back system. Build up the core, glutes, and lower back for a resilient back using our push-button system here:

  
 

Sources:

[1] Donnelly, Joseph M. Travell, Simons & Simons Myofascial Pain and Dysfunction: the Trigger Point Manual. 3rd ed., Wolters Kluwer Health, 2019.

[2] Davies, Clair, and Amber Davies. The Trigger Point Therapy Workbook: Your Self-Treatment Guide for Pain Relief. 3rd ed., New Harbinger Publications, Inc., 2013.

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