What Is a Hip Flexor
The hips have muscles in front of them called hip flexors. They stretch from the femur bones and groin area up to the lower back and hips. These muscles are what give us the ability to lift our legs up when we walk, jog, or run. Because of this, the hip flexors are very strong muscles to support all this weight mobility. Aside from simple cardiovascular activities, people use their hip flexors when dancing, jumping, and climbing. Most people are unaware of these muscles because they only know about the quadriceps, hamstrings, and calve muscles in their legs. However, these are just muscles that give your legs the strength to support your body after you step on the ground. Hip flexors keep your legs moving with each step you take.

The Main Hip Flexor Muscles

Any muscle which helps give the hip joint its flexibility is said to be a hip flexor. There are 9 hip flexor muscles in the human body, although only 3 of them are worth mentioning. These are the primary hip flexors that are the biggest and most important for allowing you to flex your hips and lift your legs. These major hip flexors are the psoas major muscle, the iliacus muscle, and the rectus femoris muscle. The psoas major is in the vertebral column’s lumbar region. It is connected to the iliacus muscle which gives flexibility to the thigh. Finally, the rectus femoris is a quadricep muscle between the knee joint and hip joint. This is what gets your leg lifted in the air as you flex your thighs.

Avoiding an Injury
The hip flexors support the movement of the legs as your feet are off the ground and your knees are moving up toward your chest. If you were to injure or strain your hip flexors due to intense exercising or sports playing, then you would not be able to move around without feeling pain. In some cases, you won’t be able to move around at all until your hip flexors are healed and you will need hip flexor pain treatment. Most people injure or strain their hip flexors because they do not stretch before their intense physical activity. If you were to just take 10 minutes to do a Spiderman stretch or pigeon stretch before exercise, you will likely prevent issues from occurring with your hip flexors.

Unfortunately, a lot of physically active people like to skip stretching and jump right into the exercise. This ends up being a painful mistake which can incapacitate them for days or weeks. It may start out as a mild pain in front of their hip. Eventually, it could progress into a sharper pain that makes it impossible to walk straight. If there is swelling or bruising in addition to this, the person should not even try walking at all. Of course, it is possible to injure your hip flexors from over-stretching too. That is why if you are new to exercise, you might want to get some advice from a physical trainer so that you know the right way to stretch.

Injury Treatments

If you happen to injure or strain your hip flexors for whatever reason, there are home remedies which you can apply to reduce the pain. The simplest ones are to place an ice pack or heat pack on the area of the muscle that is hurting. You should also refrain from doing any more exercises until the pain has mostly gone away. When you take a bath or shower, use hot water because it will relax the strained muscles. If all that still is not enough, you could always purchase some over-the-counter pain relievers at the local drug store. Any products which have acetaminophen or ibuprofen should be good enough on a temporary basis. But if your hip flexors are still in pain after a week, you should go see your primary care physician. If you are interested in treating a mild to moderate hip flexor strain at home visit HealthFaire.com for information and a natural treatment used by thousands of people.

Author's Bio: 

I've researched many problems related to sport activities. A hip flexor muscle is one of those part that you usually don't think about until it hurts. It's wise to know what to do in advance.