Manipulation of the Psoas

The psoas muscle is the muscle that is predominately responsible for stabilizing the base of the spine.  It allows for flexion of the spine and rotation through the hips.  This muscle is a critical component for athletes who are constantly depending on core and pelvic rotation.  The psoas originates in thoracic vertebrae 12  through lumbar vertebrae 5 and inserts in the femur bone of the upper-leg.  It connects the front and back of the body and is a major player in posture-related issues.  It is also an antagonist to the gluteus maximus.  Dysfunction associated with a compromised psoas muscle can include lower back pain and limited pelvic rotation.

At Trigger Point Performance Therapy we address tension within the Psoas by using the TP Massage Ball.  Through compression in the abdomen, you can often see almost immediate results in relation to posture and biomechanic response in the core.

Prior to applying pressure to the abdomen, you will want to roll the ball along the abdomen to bring circulation to the area and avoid compressing any adhesions that may be compressing a major artery.  You will want to place the TP Ball 1-2″ outside of, and parallel to, the belly button.  Lay on the ground in prone position with the TP Ball residing between the abdomen and the floor.  The manipulation will occur in three steps as described below.

  • Cobra – lay in prone position with legs flat and elbows bent at a 90 degree angle, lifting the upper body off of the ground
  • Cobra with pull – plant hands into the ground and pull the body forward while maintaining pressure on the ball
  • Cobra with pull and leg lift – while pulling body forward slowly lift the leg on the same side of the body as the ball, causing a greater amount of pressure to be transferred through the ball

Each step in this process should be repeated approximately 3-5 times and accompanied with slow, controlled breathing.


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