Yes, believe it or not but a weak Gluteus maximus (Gmax) and Gluteus medius (Gmed) (the main muscles around your bum) could be a cause of lower back pain and/or knee pain.

Why? Because when you are either walking or running both the Gmax and Gmed help to extend the leg (i.e. bring the leg back) and stabilise the pelvis when you are walking or running. If either of these muscles are inhibited or ‘weak’, then it could cause other muscles to over-compensate. 

For example, if your Gmax is not firing correctly, then your lower back muscles or hamstrings could overcompensate to assist the leg in extending.  They could then become tense and painful. 

As another example, the Gmed is situated at the side of your hips and stabilises the hip whilst the other leg is lifting off the ground when walking. If the Gmed is weak, then your QL (in the lower back) on the opposite side to the weak Gmed could be assisting in lifting and stabilising your pelvis and other leg whilst it is off the ground, causing the QL to be overused and become tight, creating pain in the lower back.

How does a weak Gmed create knee pain? Because if it is not firing correctly then, for example, the iliotibial band (ITB) which starts at the top of your leg can take the role of the Gmed. This increases the tension in the ITB, which runs down the side of the leg and attaches to the outside of your knee. If this becomes tight, the friction can cause pain around your knee. It is most common in runners, hence the term “runner’s knee!” Tightness in the ITB can also cause the patella to maltrack (shift to the side), which is another source of pain in the knee.

The above are just examples and there could of course be other reasons for your pain. However, at Health & Harmony we can assess if you have inhibited glutes and try and find out why that is the case e.g. are there other muscles in your body that are too tight/overused, or is there some long running habit in your life causing the glutes to become inhibited and not fire as they should be.

If you would like to book an assessment or simply have a sports massage then please book through our website here: https://myhealthandharmony.co.uk/contact/main-booking-page/, by emailing david@myhealthandharmony.co.uk, or messaging us via https://www.facebook.com/healthandharmonysports.