Understanding how joint hyper-mobility effects hip thrusts and glute bridges
You see "social media influencers" showing off their peachy booty and you may have tried to follow their routines.
Whats different between you and her, is that you have Joint hyper-mobility and unless you are looking in the mirror while in a glute bridge or hip thrusting, you probably wouldn't have noticed the different way your body shapes and it could be doing more damage than good.
Please note: Everyone is effected by chronic illness differently. Always consult a medical professional for fitness advice and a physiotherapy program tailored to your individual needs. This article has been written about Joint Hypermobility and not Hypermobile EDS which is a condition that is still very much misunderstood.
Glute bridge is performed with your back on the floor, and the hip thrust is performed with your back elevated (for example; on a bench).
In the case of someone with Hyper-mobility or anterior tilt, there is an obvious difference to the way that the body 'naturally' falls when exercising. As you can see from the image below, the woman on the left is flexible and she shows a clean curve through her spine. You may notice that the picture on the right points to an area where you often feel pain? It shows the development of a lumbo-sacral hinge.
Again with the photograph below, the woman on the right has a clean curve in this position, whereas the woman on the right shows a clear crease/hinge.
Below you can see some arching/extension in both pictures, but in the first one, the woman’s ribs are starting to flare upwards and towards her head indicating that she is not stabilised in her spine. The picture on the right shows potentially a little more lumbar extension than we would like to see, but she appears to have her abs engaged and ribs locked down. You can see that her hips haven’t fully opened/extended but she is likely at her hip flexor end-range, and additional extension would probably come from her lumbar spine.(5)
The best thing you can do, now having a little more knowledge regarding lumbar movements, is seek advice from a medical professional and discuss a refferal to a physiotherapist that can help you create a tailored plan for you.
Conrad Stalheim, DC, CSCS, SFMA, is the owner of Iowa Chiropractic and Performance Center. In addition to using manual therapy, he incorporates assessment and treatment of dysfunctional movement patterns leading to pain and injury. He has found it important clinically to increase glute activation and strength, especially in cases of low back pain.