The Psoas Major Muscle

The Psoas Major muscle is responsible for hip flexion and its reverse action is lumbar extension. It is a very sensory driven muscle so when times of stress, fatigue or fear occur, the Psoas Major muscle goes into overdrive. {think FIGHT OR FLIGHT} The lower abdomen also contains our intestines which lie deep behind our abdominal muscles. Then we find our parietal peritoneum which surrounds our organs and deep to that is our Psoas muscle. There’s also vascular structure between the organs and muscles as well.

The point of that anatomy lesson is this… manually trying to “release” our Psoas becomes very suspect because what are really pressing on? It is abdominal musculature? Is it the lower intestine? So what can we do instead? Try relaxing the Psoas major instead. Put the muscle on slack while working on diaphragmatic breathing and vagus nerve (part of the FIGHT OR FLIGHT system) massage via the diaphragm. The Psoas release with a yoga block allows the muscle to relax. Place the block no higher than the top of the gluteal cleft (crack), bend your knees so that your shins are vertical and relax. Stay a while, minimally 3-5 minutes.

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At Anchor Wellness Cincinnati we know that increased activity and healthy lifestyle choices can reduce risk of chronic diseases. That said, Our Physical Therapists can play a pivotal role in disease prevention as well. Contact Anchor Wellness today at 513-832-8009 to drop your anchor.

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