April 9, 2023

How To Relieve Hip Pain In Canberra

by Dan

Hip Pain and You

Hip pain is a common issue that affects millions of people worldwide. It can significantly impact a person's quality of life, making everyday activities difficult or even unbearable. In Canberra, we have a dedicated Exercise Physiology and Remedial Massage clinic which specialises in chronic hip pain. 

Exercise Physiology and Remedial Massage are two popular treatment options here in Canberra that can help alleviate and manage hip pain. Below, we will explore how these therapies can work together to improve your hip health and overall well-being.

Exercise Physiology

Definition and Role in Hip Pain Management

Exercise physiology is the study of how the human body responds and adapts to physical activity. Sam and Daniel O'Sullivan, our exercise physiologists, use their knowledge to design tailored exercise programs that help you manage and treat your various health conditions, including hip pain. 

These programs are provided to you here in Canberra and include targeted exercises that focus on strengthening and stretching the muscles surrounding the hip joint.

Types of Exercises for Hip Pain

There are several types of exercises that can help alleviate hip pain, including:

  1. Stretching exercises: These can help increase flexibility and range of motion, reducing stiffness and tension in the hip muscles.
  2. Strengthening exercises: Building strength in the muscles surrounding the hip joint can help provide additional support and stability.
  3. Low-impact aerobic exercises: Activities like swimming, cycling, and walking can improve circulation and overall hip health without causing excessive strain on the joint.
Benefits of Exercise Physiology

Exercise physiology can offer several benefits for individuals suffering from hip pain, such as:

  • Improved flexibility and range of motion
  • Increased muscle strength and endurance
  • Better balance and stability
  • Reduced inflammation and pain
  • Enhanced overall hip function

Remedial Massage

Definition and Role in Hip Pain Management

Remedial massage is a therapeutic technique that involves applying pressure and manipulating the body's soft tissues to relieve pain, tension, and discomfort. It can be particularly effective in addressing hip pain caused by muscular imbalances or tightness.

Daniel O'Sullivan provides Remedial Massage right here in Canberra at the Accelr8 Rehab Clinic in Weetangera. Read some commentary on Remedial Massage here in Canberra provided by Daniel.

Types of Remedial Massage Techniques for Hip Pain

Some common remedial massage techniques used to address hip pain include:

  1. Deep tissue massage: This technique targets the deeper layers of muscle and connective tissue, helping to release chronic tension and stiffness.
  2. Trigger point therapy: By applying direct pressure to specific points in the muscles, this technique can help relieve pain and improve muscle function.
  3. Myofascial release: This approach focuses on releasing tension in the fascia, the connective tissue surrounding muscles and organs, to alleviate pain and improve mobility.
Benefits of Remedial Massage

Remedial massage can offer several benefits for individuals suffering from hip pain, such as:

  • Reduced muscle tension and stiffness
  • Increased flexibility and range of motion
  • Enhanced circulation and lymphatic drainage
  • Reduced inflammation and pain
  • Improved overall hip function

Combining Remedial Massage and Exercise Physiology for Hip Pain

How the Two Work Together

At Accelr8 Rehab we combine exercise physiology and remedial massage to offer a comprehensive approach to hip pain management. Exercise physiology focuses on strengthening and stretching the muscles surrounding the hip joint, while remedial massage helps to release tension and alleviate pain in those muscles. Together, these therapies can create a synergistic effect that promotes overall hip health and function.

A Comprehensive Approach to Hip Pain Management

By addressing the root causes of hip pain through targeted exercise and massage, individuals can experience lasting relief and improved function. This comprehensive approach not only helps to reduce Chronic Pain but also prevents further injury and promotes long-term hip health.

Preventing Hip Pain

Lifestyle Changes

Preventing hip pain often involves making certain lifestyle changes, such as: 

  • Maintaining a healthy weight to reduce pressure on the hip joint
  • Avoiding activities that cause excessive strain on the hips
  • Practicing proper posture and ergonomics when sitting, standing, and lifting
  • Wearing supportive footwear that provides cushioning and stability.
Stretching and Strengthening Exercises

Incorporating regular stretching and strengthening exercises into your daily routine can help prevent hip pain and maintain overall hip health. Some examples of these exercises include:

  • Hip stretches
  • Glute bridges
  • Jane Fondas
  • Side-lying leg lifts
  • Lunges

Exercise physiology and remedial massage can play a crucial role in managing and alleviating hip pain. By incorporating both approaches into a comprehensive treatment plan, individuals can experience improved hip function, reduced pain, and enhanced overall well-being. Additionally, making lifestyle changes and incorporating preventative exercises can further promote long-term hip health.


  1. How long does it take to see results from exercise physiology and remedial massage?

The timeframe for experiencing results can vary depending on the individual and the severity of their hip pain. Some people may notice improvements within a few weeks, while others may require several months of consistent treatment.

  1. Can I continue my regular exercise routine while undergoing treatment for hip pain?

It is essential to consult with your exercise physiologist or healthcare provider before continuing with your regular exercise routine. They can guide you on which activities are safe and beneficial for your specific situation.

  1. How often should I receive remedial massage for hip pain?

The frequency of remedial massage sessions can vary depending on your needs and the severity of your hip pain. Your massage therapist will work with you to determine the most appropriate treatment schedule.

  1. Are there any risks or side effects associated with exercise physiology or remedial massage?

Both exercise physiology and remedial massage are generally considered safe and effective treatments for hip pain. However, it is essential to work with qualified professionals to ensure proper technique and avoid potential risks or complications.

  1. Do I need a referral to see an exercise physiologist or remedial massage therapist?

While a referral may not be necessary in all cases, it can be helpful to consult with your primary healthcare provider before seeking treatment for hip pain. They can help determine the most appropriate course of action and provide recommendations for qualified practitioners.

Finding the Right Practitioners

How to Choose an Exercise Physiologist in Canberra

When looking for an exercise physiologist, consider the following:

  1. Credentials and experience: Ensure the practitioner has the appropriate certifications and experience in treating hip pain.
  2. Communication style: Look for someone who listens to your concerns, answers your questions, and explains the treatment plan clearly.
  3. Location and availability: Choose a practitioner who is conveniently located and has appointment times that work with your schedule.
How to Choose a Remedial Massage Therapist in Canberra

When selecting a remedial massage therapist, keep these factors in mind:

  1. Certifications and training: Verify that the therapist has the necessary qualifications and experience in treating hip pain.
  2. Personal preferences: Consider factors like the therapist's gender, communication style, and approach to treatment.
  3. Recommendations: Seek referrals from friends, family, or healthcare providers to find a therapist with a proven track record.

Monitoring Your Progress

Tracking Improvements

To ensure the effectiveness of your treatment plan, it's important to track your progress regularly. You can do this by:

  1. Keeping a journal of your pain levels and any changes you notice.
  2. Discussing your progress with your exercise physiologist and remedial massage therapist during appointments.
  3. Periodically reassessing your treatment plan to determine if adjustments are needed.
Adjusting Your Treatment Plan

As you progress through your treatment, you may need to adjust your plan to accommodate any changes in your condition. This can include:

  1. Modifying exercises to increase or decrease intensity.
  2. Adjusting the frequency or duration of remedial massage sessions.
  3. Incorporating additional therapies or treatments, if necessary.

The Importance of a Holistic Approach

A holistic approach to hip pain management considers not only the physical aspects but also the emotional, mental, and lifestyle factors that may contribute to your condition. This can include:

  1. Stress management: Chronic stress can exacerbate pain and hinder recovery. Incorporating stress-reduction techniques such as meditation, yoga, or deep breathing exercises can be beneficial.
  2. Nutrition: Eating a balanced diet that promotes overall health and reduces inflammation can help support your recovery.
  3. Sleep: Prioritizing quality sleep can give your body the necessary rest it needs to heal and recover from hip pain.

By addressing these factors in conjunction with exercise physiology and remedial massage, you can optimise your hip pain management and improve your overall well-being.

Managing hip pain requires a comprehensive approach that includes exercise physiology, remedial massage, lifestyle changes, and a holistic focus on overall well-being. By working with qualified professionals, monitoring your progress, and adjusting your treatment plan as needed, you can effectively manage and alleviate hip pain while promoting long-term hip health.

The Best Resources to Help Your Hip in the Canberra Area

We've put together a list of resources for managing your hip pain, with links to useful websites, information and articles.

Hip And Groin Pain – Canberra Physiotherapy clinic

Hip and groin pain can affect up to 30% of the general population from those playing social or competitive sports to those a bit more elderly.

Hip and groin pain can exist with numerous different presentations, causes and symptoms. Symptoms around the hip can be quite niggly and debilitating for the individual, and if not treated appropriately these symptoms can seemingly linger and worsen over time.

The hip joint is responsible for absorbing large forces from the ground as well as generating a large amount of force to propel ourselves forward such as when we walk or run. For example, studies have shown that we have 3-4 times our body-weight going through the hip with each step when walking, with running this can be as high as 8-10 times our body-weight. This amount of force highlights how important our hips are, and the need for them to be strong and healthy.

The hip itself has over 20 muscles that all work with one another to provide good hip function and stability. Adding to this, the hip is a ball and socket type joint which allows good stability as well range of movement. Broadly, hip and groin pain can be first broken into three main areas; anterior hip/groin pain, lateral hip pain and posterior hip/buttock pain. This helps to better target the physical examination to identify specific structures.

Lateral Hip Pain | Southside Physiotherapy Canberra

If you are experiencing pain on the outside of your hip that can refer down the outside of your thigh, you may be suffering from gluteal tendinopathy or greater trochanteric pain syndrome (GTPS). You may have heard this called trochanteric bursitis in the past, but the new name GTPS includes a few other body tissues that can be responsible for that sharp hip pain.

 If left untreated this condition causes levels of disability and a reduction in quality of life similar to end stage hip osteoarthritis. Consequently, if you suspect you’re suffering from gluteal tendinopathy, now is definitely the time to act.

 Who gets lateral hip pain commonly?

  • Women aged 40-60
  • Runners
  • Those who are overweight or have more sedentary lifestyles
  • Why does it happen?
  • Training over-load or unusually high physical load on the hip. (Often with a weakness in the Glute Med muscle)
  • Activities where the Glute tendons are compressed as the hip moves towards the midline of the body (ie running, gym work, team sports, up/down stairs)
  • More rarely when you fall or have a hard hit on the bony side of your hip

Hip Physio Canberra

Need a Hip Physiotherapist in Canberra who understands hip and pelvic pain and can help you?

Physiotherapy Canberra | Hip Physiotherapist Deakin | ACT

Physiotherapy or physical therapy is an exercise program that helps you to improve movement, relieve pain, encourage blood flow for faster healing, and restore your physical function and fitness level. The main aim of physical therapy is to make your daily activities, such as walking, getting in and out of bed, or climbing stairs, easier. It can be prescribed as an individual treatment program or combined with other treatments. Physical therapy is usually ordered to help you recover after certain surgeries, injuries and long-term health problems such as arthritis.

A physiotherapist will examine your symptoms and daily activities, and make a treatment plan, which primarily focuses on reducing your pain and swelling. The different procedures used by your therapist depend on your specific physical ailment.

What does Physiotherapy Involve?

Physical therapy involves a combination of education, manual therapy, exercises and techniques. Some of the procedures commonly used are:

  • Stretching Exercises: Surgery, age and conditions, such as arthritis and osteoporosis, can cause inflammation and stiffness in your joints and muscles, and restrict your movement. Physiotherapists guide you step by step to stretch certain areas of your body to restore flexibility, and enhance the movement of joints and muscles.
  • Core Strengthening & Stability exercises: Specific exercises are designed to make the core (pelvis and lower back) strong enough to support the whole body.
  • Ice & Heat: Applying heat or cold treatment on muscles can stimulate the blood flow and reduce swelling. Heat treatment helps to reduce joint pain and spasm in the lower back and neck, and loosen muscles. Cooling works best for ankle sprains.
  • Ultrasound: An ultrasound sends high frequency sound waves over your body and stimulates deep body tissues. Vibrations produced by sound waves help to stimulate blood flow and facilitate the healing process. This procedure can also be used to improve metabolism and enhance the adhesiveness of bones after a fracture.
  • Electrostimulation: In this procedure, an electric current is passed through the area which requires treatment. This helps in relieving pain, stimulating muscles and nerves, and expanding blood vessels.

These treatments may cause mild soreness or swelling. You can talk to your therapist in case it is prolonged.

Hip Arthroscopy Bruce | Hip Pain | Hip Arthritis Canberra

Hip arthroscopy, also referred to as keyhole surgery or minimally invasive surgery, is performed through very small incisions to evaluate and treat a variety of hip conditions. Arthroscopy is a surgical procedure in which an arthroscope is inserted into a joint. Arthroscopy is a term that comes from two Greek words, arthro-, meaning joint, and -skopein, meaning to examine.

Hip arthroscopy may be indicated for the following reasons:

  • Debridement of loose bodies: Bone chips or torn cartilage debris cause hip pain and decreased range of motion and can be removed with hip arthroscopy
  • Removal of adhesions: Adhesions are areas of built up scar tissue that can limit movement and cause pain
  • Repair of torn labrum: The labrum lines the outer edge of the “socket” or acetabulum to ensure a good fit. Tears can occur in the labrum causing hip pain
  • Removal of bone spurs: Extra bone growth caused by injury or arthritis that damages the ends of the bones cause pain and limited joint mobility
  • Partial Synovectomy: Removal of portions of the inflamed synovium (joint lining) in patients with inflammatory arthritis can help to decrease the patient’s pain. However, a complete synovectomy requires an open, larger hip incision
  • Debridement of joint surfaces: Conditions such as arthritis can cause the breakdown of tissue or bone in the joint
  • Repair after Trauma: Repair of fractures or torn ligaments caused by trauma
  • Evaluation and diagnosis: Patients with unexplained pain, swelling, stiffness and instability in the hip that is unresponsive to conservative treatment may undergo hip arthroscopy for evaluation and diagnosis of their condition

Hip Pain & Groin Strain

Hip pain is a condition that originates from an injury or from a pre-existing condition. Yet, among many cases of hip pain, inflammation of the tendon in the pelvic area is the most common. Hip and groin pain can be related and they can be caused by a variety of muscle or joint problems in your pelvis. Sometimes, hip pain can be construed as lower back pain.

Pain on the hip joint is sometimes caused by sitting frequently for long periods of time, landing your butt clumsily, sports that require too much pelvic movement, a sedentary lifestyle, and arthritis. Hip joints can become achy when they stagnate in a fixed position for a lengthy duration, or when they are being moved repetitiously and uncomfortably.

A groin strain is a relatively common condition characterised by the tearing of some or all the groin muscles. The muscles at the inner aspect of your thigh are known as the adductor muscles (groin). These muscles originate from the pelvis and insert into the inner aspect of the thigh and lower leg bones.

The groin muscles are responsible for stabilising the pelvis and moving the leg towards the mid-line of the body. They are particularly active during running and kicking. A groin strain commonly occurs due to a sudden contraction of the groin muscles, usually when they are in a position of stretch. This typically occurs during rapid acceleration whilst running, particularly when changing direction or when a footballer performs a long kick. They are commonly seen in running sports such as football, hockey and athletics (particularly sprinters, hurdlers, and long jumpers) as well as skiing, horse riding and gymnastics. Groin strains tend to occur more among older athletes, particularly if they did an inadequate warm-up prior to the actual game.

Groin strains range from a grade 1 to a grade 3 strain and are classified as follows:

Grade 1: Small number of muscle fibres are torn resulting in some pain but allowing full function.

Grade 2: A significant number of muscle fibres are torn with moderate loss of function.

Grade 3: All muscle fibres are ruptured resulting in major loss of function.

Proper diagnosis and management strategies for hip pain and groin strain are very important as they may become chronic if not managed appropriately.

Hip and Pelvis Pain | Physio, Poditary & Massage

Hip and pelvis pain may be less common than other joint injuries but because the area is centrally located in our body any problems can be quite debilitating.The hip and pelvis region has a close relationship with the lumbar spine. Sometimes pain may be referred to the hip and pelvis area from the lower back such as with lumbar disc lesions and facet joint impingement. Likewise hip dysfunction and sacroiliac joint mal-alignments can predispose to lower back pain.Hip and pelvis injuries can result from a fall, direct blow, twist, or excessive muscle contraction. Your hip and pelvis are designed to withstand constant and demanding workloads when you are playing sports during everyday tasks. Any dysfunction to the area can cause stress to other body parts resulting in pain. An early diagnosis from one of our physios can help direct the most effective care for your hip or pelvis pain.Sport & Spinal Physiotherapy has helped many clients from Gungahlin and the wider Canberra community with all types of hip and pelvis pain syndromes.Snapping Hip Syndrome is caused by a tight Tensor Fascia Latae (TFL) muscle, located at the side of the hip, snapping over the femur bone when the hip moves.Trochanteric Bursitis is inflammation of the bursa (sac of fluid) located at the side of the femur bone near the hip joint. This overuse injury is often related to poor lower limb biomechanics such as poor muscle flexibility, weak gluteal muscles and excessive foot pronation.Psoas Bursitis is inflammation of the bursa (sac of fluid) located at the front of the hip joint. This overuse injury is often related to poor muscle flexibility at the front of the hip, weak gluteal muscles and poor dynamic core stability.Gluteal Tendinopathy is an overuse of the gluteus medius muscle at its insertion to the femur bone near the greater trochanter. This results in a breakdown in the structure of the tendon and pain is produced when the muscle is used such as with walking. The injury is most common in middle-aged women.Adductor pain is usually related to the musculoskeletal structures around the groin. The injury can be in the muscle belly associated with a strain or at the tendon junction usually caused by overuse.Osteitis Pubis is an inflammation of the cartilaginous joint at the front of the pelvis (pubic symphysis). Chronic osteitis pubis can lead to degeneration and bony changes in the joint, often causing groin pain. The injury is common in sports with repeated running, jumping and kicking, and amongst women after childbirth.Osteoarthritis of the hip is a common complaint amongst our ageing population and even more so recently with the increasing incidence of obesity. Mild osteoarthritis symptoms can be eased with physiotherapy. For more severe osteoarthritis, a total hip replacement may be warranted. We can work with your surgeon to make sure you make a complete recovery from any hip replacement.Abdominal Hernias are a protrusion of fat tissue or an abdominal organ through the abdominal wall. Most of the time, abdominal hernias develop when pressure in the abdomen is increased, and the abdominal wall is weak.

What's Causing My Hip Pain?!

The hip is a complex joint as it is required to have a lot of movement as well as support the weight of the body.

The hip is also a very common area where people feel pain. There are many possible causes of hip discomfort. Some of the conditions I see frequently include:


Degeneration of joint cartilage and the bone may cause hip pain. It is more commonly seen in middle aged to older people.

Soft tissue pain

Issues with muscles, tendons and bursae (fluid filled sacs to reduce friction between structures) can lead to hip discomfort. Pain over the side of the hip is frequently caused by trochanteric bursitis.

Referred pain

Often hip pain occurs as a result of a back problem.

When you have hip pain, it is important to get assessed to determine the cause of the condition. Proper diagnosis will allow you to receive the best treatment.

In many cases, hip pain will improve with conservative management without the use of surgery or medication.

If you have hip pain and you’re not sure what to do about it, please feel free to call us on (02) 6257 9400 or email us at [email protected].

Hip & Lower Back Pain

Yes podiatrists can help with your hip and lower back pain if they are related to your foot function. If you have been suffering from lower back and hip pain and not having much success with your current treatment options come see one of our podiatrists today

We can help you with soft cushioned prescription shoes that will assist with your lower back and hip and we can provide support devices that will help with your walking mechanics to improve hip and lower back function when walking.

Hip, Groin and Thigh Pain - Canberra Physiotherapy Centre

Hip pain is common particularly in adults and often causes functional disability.  It can affect 30-40% of adults who play sports or regularly attend the gym, and affect around 15% of all those over the age of 60.

In the younger population hip labral injuries and synovitis are more common, whereas trochanic pain syndromes and osteoarthritis become more common with aging. 

The hip, groin and thigh is a common region that is affected by referred pain from the sacroiliac joints, pelvis and lower back.  It is important that a thorough assessment is performed to identify the pain driver so that correct treatment choice can be made.

Common hip problems include:

  • Osteoarthritis
  • Greater trochantic bursitis or pain syndrome
  • Gluteal or hamstring tendinopathy
  • Femoral acetabular impingement
  • Labral impingement or injury
  • Referred pain from the lower back

Our physiotherapists systematically test the structures of the hip and around the hip region to ensure they find the driver of your pain.  Once your problem has been identified appropriate treatment directed towards the source. 

Treatment may involve combination of mobilisation of your joints, soft tissue massage, exercise prescription and use of other modalities that may help relieve your pain quickly.

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