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Gluteus Medius Muscle: Belt Line, Hip, Buttock, Thigh Pain

Pain in the buttocks and hip can indicate gluteus medius dysfunction. Pain occasionally extends down the side of the thigh as well as into the back of the thigh.

What are the pain and symptoms associated with the gluteus medius muscle?

  • Pain in the lower back around the beltline
  • Pain in the hip
  • Pain in the buttock
  • Pain can extend down the outside of the leg
  • Pain can extend into back of the leg
  • Pain when lying on the affected side
  • Pain will prevent sitting on the afflicted buttock
  • Pain worsens when sitting or standing for extended periods of time
  • Pain when sitting slouched

Where is the gluteus medius muscle?

The gluteus medius is located toward back and side of the hip. It attaches the hip bone (ilium) to the upper leg (greater trochanter of the femur).

What movements does the gluteus medius control?

  • Moves the thigh sideways away from the body
  • The front muscle fibers assists with twisting the thigh in toward the other leg and lifting the leg out in front of the body

Activities that cause gluteus medius pain and symptoms:

  • Sitting for long periods of time with legs crossed
  • Standing on hard surfaces for an extended time
  • Walking and carrying a heavy item
  • Carrying a child on the hip
  • Always carrying heavy objects on one side such as filled buckets, heavy briefcase, etc.
  • Aerobic exercise
  • Running
  • Weightlifting


Gluteus Medius Origin, Insertion, Action, Innervation

The gluteus medius muscle moves the thigh sideways away from the body and twists the thigh in toward the body.

Interesting facts about the gluteus medius:

  • As you walk, the two gluteus medius muscles take turns supporting your full upper body weight. Every one pound of extra body weight adds two pounds to the gluteus medius workload.
  • The gluteus medius stabilizes the hip to allow you to stand on one leg.

Clinical diagnoses to which the gluteus medius muscle symptom may contribute:

  • Sacroiliac joint dysfunction
  • Inflammation of the sub gluteus medius bursa
  • Trochanteric bursitis
  • Hip Pointer
  • Hip dislocation
  • Piriformis syndrome
  • Tensor fasciae latae syndrome
  • Intervertebral stenosis
  • Ankylosing spondylitis
  • Cauda equina syndrome

Other muscles that should be considered and examined in conjunction with the gluteus medius:

Satellite trigger points associated with the gluteus medius muscle:

  • Quadratus lumborum
  • Gluteus minimus
  • Piriformis
  • Tensor fascia latae

For detailed anatomy information:  
Gluteus Medius Anatomy

Help with Gluteus Medius Muscle Pain

Cold Therapy Gel For Gluteus Medius Injury and Pain

Biofreeze Pain Relieving Gel is a cold therapy gel that provides pain relieve for new injuries and is great as a maintenance treatment for overuse and repetitive use injuries. Cold therapy should be used on new and recent injuries instead of heat as it cools the area much like ice and does not promote swelling. A recent study showed that Biofreeze decreased pain 2 times more than ice and the pain relief lasts 9 – 10 longer. If your pain is from a recent injury to the glute medius or low back muscles I would recommend applying Biofreeze across the low back, hips and entire buttock area.

Hot Cold Pack For Gluteus Medius Treatment

CorPak Soft Comfort Hot & Cold Pack Wrap is a versatile pack that can be used to treat the low back, buttocks, hips and upper leg as well as other areas of the body. This pack works well for the gluteal muscles as it is large enough to cover the area. The pack is filled with pliable gel and has a soft frost free cover that will not irritate your skin. For recent injuries, use it cold to reduce swelling. For older injures or chronic pain use heat to relax the muscles and increase circulation.

Warm Therapy Gel For Low Back, Hip and Buttock Pain

Sombra Warm Therapy Pain Relieving Gel. Sombra provides warmth without burning and is better at relieving pain than other over the counter pain creams. Applying Sombra to the muscles across the lower back and down into the hips, buttocks and side and back of the thighs can help reduce pain and tightness caused by the gluteus medius muscle. I recommend Sombra for chronic pain and pain from arthritis.

Get Relief From Gluteus Medius Low Back Pain By Providing Abdominal Support and Compression

The Pro-Choice Back Support is my go to for abdominal support and back brace. This brace has helped me more than any other with low back and low abdominal pain. The lumbar pad provides support without the uncomfortable restriction and poking of metal supports. The band is wide, covering the entire lower back. It has an adjustable Velcro front closure along with adjustable Velcro side panels which can be tightened or loosened to provide support and compression. The brace also reflects your body heat back into the muscles, providing warmth to tight sore muscles. For those with recent injuries or flare-ups, it is comfortable enough wear all night and will not disrupt your sleep.

I have recommended this brace to many clients and friends with chronic low back pain and everyone has commented how much it helps relieve their pain and increase mobility. If you have muscle, tendon or ligament injuries, new or old, I highly recommend that you try this brace.

Sizing: Small and Medium fits waists 22" - 38". Large fits waist 24" - 40". X-large fits waist 41" - 50. XX-large fits waist 51" - 60".

Self  Treatment For Gluteus Medius Hip, Buttock, Leg and Low Back Pain

Do you know that muscle 'knots' and other dysfunction in the gluteus medius muscle can cause pain throughout the hips, buttocks, legs and low back?

If you are interested in treating back pain caused by trigger points I  recommend you purchase Claire Davies The Trigger Point Therapy Workbook: Your Self-Treatment Guide for Pain Relief.  Mr. Davies explains the trigger point phenomenon and muscle pain in everyday language.  But what makes this book worth its weight in gold are the individual muscle trigger point treatments that Davies has compiled. His diagrams and step by step instructions help you locate which muscles are contributing to your pain,  how to find the trigger point and treat it. If you suffer from unresolved back, hip, buttock, and leg pain I highly recommend this book. It takes time and practice to master finding trigger points, but once you learn you have a tool and method to help relieve muscle pain throughout the body. Relieving trigger points in the glute muscles have helped many people reduce or even resolve their low back, buttock, and hip pain issues. This book is a must-have for anyone interested in finding the cause and treating muscle pain.

Thera Cane Helps You Easily Treat Low Back and Buttock Pain

The Thera Cane Massager is my first choice of purchase with the workbook for two reasons: First, you can easily reach the low back, and buttocks without the need to bend or contort your body. Secondly, once you understand trigger points, you will find that you will want to treat other muscles and you may need help accessing the muscles. The Thera Cane allows you to easily treat all muscles of the body. If you have weak or arthritic hands, you may need a tool to help you use and hold the pressure required for trigger point treatment.  If you are buying the workbook, the Thera Cane is worth the investment!