Pregnancy Hip Pain | Stretches and Exercises for Sore Hips

Pregnancy hip pain is one of the most common issues pregnant women experience. According to the research, about 20% of women experience some type of pain during pregnancy.  In general, you can feel the pain on the side or the back of the hip. Usually, the pain is felt dull or sharp and it can increase gradually or suddenly.

You can feel the hip pain at any time during pregnancy.  However,  in general, your hips will start to hurt in the second or third trimesters as your baby develops and your body prepares itself for birth.

pregnancy hip pain

What causes hip pain during pregnancy

The main cause of hip pain during pregnancy is a hormone called relaxin. Your body starts to produce relaxin in your second and third trimesters.  In response to relaxin, the ligaments in your body that hold together the sacroiliac joints, that attach your spine to your pelvis, start to loosen.

In general, this relaxation helps you to deliver your baby, however, it causes pain in your hips, lower back, and legs since you have to bear the weight of your uterus down on your joints.

This, in turn, can cause inflammation, misalignment or even can make bones to grind against each other.  Another extra stress is added with a change in gait.  According to the experts, every pregnant woman experience these symptoms which can be relieved by applying appropriate treatments.

In addition, pregnant women tend to sleep on their side in the later stages of pregnancy, which leads to hip pain due to the pressure.  In fact, people who are overweight can feel more pain during these times.

Is it normal to have hip pain during pregnancy

It is quite normal to experience hip pain during your pregnancy. Often times you will feel this problem later in your pregnancy period,  especially during the third trimester.

The main reason that you feel this issue is because your body starts to prepare itself for delivery. Usually, you can experience the pain sharply on your side where your baby generally lies in the uterus. 

Hip exercises for pregnancy

You can perform certain kinds of exercises when you feel the heat pain in order to relieve the issue. One of the most effective exercises you can do is a bridge.

With the help of these exercises, the hip flexors are gently stretched. By doing this exercise regularly you can also and make your lower back abdominal and glute stronger. Try these exercises at home and get the relief from hip and lower backaches.

Please note that in yoga, a bridge is often associated with a backbend. 

Nevertheless, you need to avoid big backbends when you are pregnant.  However, by gently stretching your hip flexors you will relieve the pain and discomfort which can help you during labor.

What do you need?

All you need to have is a yoga block if you opt for the more challenging poses.

How to perform the exercise?

First, you start by lying on your back flat.  You need to bend your knees and you need to keep your feet flat on the floor. Pay attention that your feet are roughly hip-width apart since it will become uncomfortable if they are spaced more. You also need to keep your arms straight alongside your body.

Start inhaling and make sure that you curl your pelvis as your lower back is slowly pressing against the floor. Then continue by lifting your hips and back of the ground and pressing evenly into your feet while retaining a neutral spine.

Stay in this position for a few seconds

Start to exhale while slowly rolling your spine back onto the floor.

Please make sure that your spine remains natural as you relax and prepare for the next lift.

You come to perform these exercises about 10 times.

How to benefit more from this workout

If you have a yoga block then you can even take these hip stretch exercises to the next level. This time your lower back will be resting on the block. This position will help your hip flexors to open up even more.

You can start performing the workout by following steps 1 and 2 which mentioned above.

This time when you get your hips above chest level you need to slide your yoga block under the sacrum. You can have the block on any level or height. The key point is that you should feel comfortable enough to rest your pelvis’ weight on it.

If, before your pregnancy, you had flexible hips, then you can lift one of your feet, pointing your toe and tucking them back onto the ground. In this position, the top of your foot will now be pointed towards the floor.

Once you performed 1 rep,  relax completely and take a breath deeply about 20 seconds.

You can now untuck your toes and switch your feet in order to repeat the movement on the other side.

Pregnancy hip pain relief

In general, you can get hip pain relief during your pregnancy anytime during the day by sitting backward on a chair in order to take the pressure off your spine while relaxing your back. In addition, your back can be supported by additional pillows while you sit in a chair. It is also important that you sleep in a proper position at night.

In fact, you can follow this link to find more detailed information on how you can sleep better by using pregnancy pillows. You can easily take the pressure off your lower back and hips by using a good pregnancy pillow that supports your body and aligns it properly.

Left hip pain during pregnancy

When you are pregnant sciatic nerve pain generally causes you more pain on your left.  Pregnant women can also relieve hip pain by taking in a hot bath or using a heating pad.

If you want to learn more about staying healthy during pregnancy please read our regularly updated block. A date with a baby always comes up with the newest information and resources available which can help you to learn more about living a healthy pregnancy.

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