Forums General Left hip popping while walking Re: Left hip popping while walking

AvatarMartin Repcek

I’m not qualified to tell you what is or isn’t wrong with you, but I can tell you what helped with my hip dysfunction. You’ll have to decide if any of this applies to you. I have a few different things going on with my right leg. Apparently nothing has moved correctly for probably 20+ years with everything from my pelvis to my big toe having a problem. The simplified version is my right foot was externally rotated, valgus knee, and occasional hip pain. I was seeing a physical therapist for a while and although he was doing all the right things I wasn’t seeing much for results. 

I got this crazy idea that if hundreds of thousands (most likely millions) of movement cycles in a bad position caused or re-inforced my dysfunction it was going to take hundreds of thousands of cycles in a good position to fix it. One of the things I started doing is the elliptical machine at the gym. Ellipticals with long strides work best (I like LifeFitness). I usually do this barefoot or wearing my Vibrams. My objective is to keep the heels of both feet planted at all times, feet pointed straight, knees tracking over middle to outer toes. Seems simple, but if you have tightness in your hip or ankles you are going to have to work through some restrictions. When I first started doing this I couldn’t for the life of me keep both feet planted. My right hip was so tight that the lack of range of motion caused my left foot to lift off the platform. It hurt so bad I thought for sure I was causing bone damage. After about 5 minutes I managed to get loosened up enough that I could keep both feet on the platform.
After about 3 or 4 elliptical workouts (30-60 minutes each) I had regained most hip range of motion and my elliptical workout no longer caused hip pain. My physical therapist told me my right glute medius is extremely weak. When I’m really focusing on keeping correct form I feel the glute medius on the weak side really firing. As a result of my elliptical workouts my foot points straight when I run, knee is less pre-disposed to go valgus, and the hip popping doesn’t happen as often. This is still a work in progress and thankfully I’m still seeing progress. Wish fixing the ankle ROM was as easy.