Let’s face it, those of us who get paid the most these days are the ones that can put in hours upon hours of sitting behind a desk. Although this might make your wallet fatter, it will almost definitely make your hip pain and FAI symptoms worse. When we sit for long periods of time, our hamstrings and glutes are not engaged at all and it is very likely that these posterior muscles atrophy and lose the ability to contract. On the opposite side of the body, the adductors and quadriceps become overworked and pull the hip bones into an anterior position. If you have a predisposition to hip pain based on your anatomy, you can very well bet that these consequences from sitting all day will cause you some serious discomfort.
Ideally, you’d want to take some movement breaks and provide some variety in which static position you’re in all day. However, there are also some exercises you can sprinkle in to reverse those long hours of sitting:
(1) The first thing you’re going to want to do is stretch out those super tight thighs and get those hips in extension since they’ve been in flexion during all those hours of sitting. Here is a great stretch that accomplishes this:
(2) If you’re lucky enough to have a foam roller or lacrosse ball at your office, you can incorporate some soft tissue work on the quadriceps and adductors:
(3) Finally, wake up your glutes and hamstrings! A great way to do this is by utilizing the hip hinge. Make sure you keep your back straight on the way down while pushing your hips backward and really squeeze the glutes on the way up to emphasize that posterior contraction.
While these exercises can certainly help, the most important thing you can do is to add variety in your static positions throughout the day. When your body is tired of sitting – kneel; when it’s sick of kneeling, stand (if you have a standing desk). If those aren’t options for you, then go walk around the office for a few minutes.
Stop worrying what your co-workers think! Remember, it’s better to be weird than in pain. . . just don’t get fired.