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Hip Pain When Walking? Here Are 5 Reasons Why

Are you experiencing hip pain when walking? You're not alone. Hip pain is a common problem that affects millions of people worldwide. It can be caused by various reasons, some more serious than others. Understanding the cause of your hip pain is crucial to finding the proper treatment and relief.

In this blog post, we will explore 5 reasons you may be experiencing hip pain when walking and what you can do about it.

What causes pain in your hip when walking?

  1. Osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis, a degenerative joint disease, is the most common reason for hip pain when walking. Osteoarthritis is caused by the wearing down of the protective cartilage that cushions your hip joint, leading to inflammation and pain. This condition is more prevalent in older adults, but it can also affect younger individuals who are physically active. If you have a history of osteoarthritis in your family, you may be at a higher risk of developing it.

  1. Bursitis

Bursitis is another prevalent cause of hip pain when walking. Bursae are tiny fluid-filled sacs that cushion between bones and soft tissues. When these sacs become inflamed, usually due to repetitive movements, it can cause pain and discomfort in your hip. This condition can be more common in athletes and people with certain occupations that require repetitive motions.

  1. Hip fracture

A hip fracture is a severe injury that can cause excruciating hip pain when walking. Fractures are often caused by high-impact trauma, such as a fall or a car accident. You may also be at a higher risk of hip fractures if you have osteoporosis or low bone density. In addition to pain, you may also experience difficulty walking or standing, as well as bruising and swelling.

  1. Muscle strain

Muscle strain is a common injury that can cause hip pain when walking. It can occur when you overexert your hip muscles, such as in high-intensity exercises or sudden movements. This can lead to pain, stiffness, and limited range of motion in your hip. Rest, ice, and physical therapy can help relieve muscle strain and prevent future injuries.

  1. Sciatica

Sciatica is a condition caused by irritation or compression of the sciatic nerve, which runs from your lower back to your legs. When this nerve is affected, it can cause pain, numbness, and tingling in your hip and leg. In addition to walking, sciatica pain can worsen with sitting or standing for long periods.

Hip pain when walking can significantly impact your daily life and activities. Depending on the cause of your pain, treatment options may vary. Prevention is better than cure, so maintain a healthy weight, exercise regularly, and avoid high-impact activities that can strain your hip joints.

Risk factors for developing walking hip pain

While various factors can cause it, walking hip pain is one type of hip pain that often goes overlooked. This pain can significantly impact your daily life and make it difficult to perform even the simplest tasks. These are the risk factors for developing walking hip pain and how to prevent it.

  • Age and gender

Our joints and muscles weaken, making us more susceptible to injuries and pain. Hip pain is more prevalent in older individuals as the cartilage in our joints starts to wear down with age. Women, in particular, are at a higher risk of developing walking hip pain due to the anatomical differences in their hips.

  • Previous injuries

If you have had a prior injury to your hip, it can increase your risk of developing walking hip pain. An injury can weaken your hip joint and make it more susceptible to developing strain or inflammation.

  • Poor posture

Our posture plays a significant role in our overall health, and it is no different regarding hip pain. Poor posture puts unnecessary stress on the body, causing muscles to become imbalanced and leading to pain and discomfort. When we stand or walk, it is essential to maintain a neutral spine and engage our core muscles to support our hips and prevent pain.

  • Overuse

Repetitive activities or overuse of our hip joint can lead to walking hip pain. This is especially common in athletes, who often push their bodies to the limit during training and competition. Continuous and repetitive movements can cause wear and tear on the hip joint, leading to pain and discomfort.

  • Obesity

Being overweight or obese puts excess pressure on our joints, including the hips. This can cause strain and inflammation, leading to walking hip pain. Losing or maintaining a healthy weight can significantly reduce the risk of developing hip pain and improve overall joint health.

  • Sedentary lifestyle

A sedentary lifestyle can also increase the risk of developing walking hip pain. When we are inactive, our muscles become weak and tight, which can put additional strain on our hip joints when we perform physical activities. Regular exercise can help strengthen the muscles around the hip, reducing the risk of pain and discomfort.

  • Genetics

Unfortunately, some risk factors for developing walking hip pain, such as genetics, are out of our control. Some individuals may be predisposed to developing hip pain due to inherited bone or muscle issues. In such cases, we must be mindful of our bodies and take necessary precautions to prevent or manage pain.

How to alleviate hip pain when walking

Once you've determined the cause of your hip pain, the following methods can help relieve the discomfort:

  1. Strengthen your hip muscles with squats, lunges, and leg lifts. These can help increase muscle strength and improve stability in your hips.

  2. Stretch your hip flexors by incorporating stretching exercises, such as isometric quad and hip flexor stretches, into your daily routine to help loosen and lengthen the muscles in your hips.

  3. Avoid high-impact activities like running and jumping. Instead, opt for low-impact exercises like swimming, cycling, or using an elliptical machine.

  4. Wear the right shoes when walking. Look for shoes with good arch support and cushioning to absorb shock and stabilize your hips.

  5. If you have severe hip pain, assistive devices like a cane or walker can take the pressure off your hips while walking, helping improve your balance and prevent falls.

  6. Practice good posture while walking. Keep your shoulders back and your head up, and avoid arching your back or tilting your pelvis.

  7. Try heat or ice therapy to relax tense muscles and improve blood flow to the affected area, reducing pain and stiffness.

Stop hip pain now - Consult our experts at Pinnacle Orthopaedics!

Ready to end your hip pain and get back to walking pain-free? Look no further! Discover the top five reasons for hip pain when walking and how our team at Pinnacle Orthopaedics can help you find relief.

If you are searching for a trusted "orthopedics near me" that offers quality medical care, we recommend that you visit our clinic near you:

Don't let hip pain slow you down any longer - schedule your appointment with us today and take the first step towards a pain-free life!


The material on this site is for informational purposes only and DOES NOT CONSTITUTE THE PROVIDING OF MEDICAL ADVICE, and is not intended to be a substitute for independent professional medical judgment, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your health.