Hip flexor muscles are used in bending and hip flexion (the motion of the knee bending towards the stomach).They join the top of the femur to the lower back, hips and the groin. They include the psoas minor, iliopsoas, and the rectus femoris.
At the top, where the hip flexor muscle attaches to the spine is the psoas minor which attaches to the psoas major directly below it. The iliacus on the outside attaches to the psoas minor to form a triangular shape through the pelvic bone, but around the sacrum finally linking down at the inner thigh to the femur through the rectus femoris.
Because of their location in the body, the hip flexor muscles are highly involved in everyday routine activities. This exposes them to injury, fatigue stress and damage. Too much cycling, strenuous dancing, rigorous martial arts may cause pain in the lower back and quadriceps with potential causes that stem from:
1. Hip flexor strain
Hip flexors are activated when the knee is bent in towards the upper body. Hip flexor strain is the stretching or tearing of a muscle in the hip. This injury may occur on one of the hip flexor muscles. These strains are caused by backward slipping while running.
An occurrence which may either caused by repetitive minor slips or one major slip. Also, during activities such as dancing or martial arts, when the knee is also bent and straightened repeatedly, there is a high risk for the hip flexor strain.
Hip flexor strain may lead to muscle spasms and a sore feeling, cramps and pain in the upper leg. Hip flexor strain may be relieved by routinely doing hip flexor intensive stretches and yoga. Other ways to relieve this strain is by placing an ice pack on the area which has been affected, resting the muscle, hot shower or over the counter pain killers.