For starters, SI joint pain problems can be traced to tightened and shortened psoas muscles, which are a major component of what are commonly referred to as the hip flexors. Tight psoas muscles, in turn, can cause all sorts of trouble for the hamstrings and the pelvis, most notably pelvic tilt. Pelvic tilt, in turn, adds additional strain to the already overstretched hamstrings, which in turn weaken the gluteal muscles, which then further exacerbate the pelvic tilt – in my case, likely anterior.
The chief cause of tight psoas muscles is excessive sitting, especially excessive sitting in the wrong posture which, it turns out, I was an absolute master at. So concerned was I about slouching forward in my office chair that I made a point of arching my spine inward until it became a concave semi-circle, much like the loop of a question mark. Needless to say, this only worsened my already tight psoas situation and grumpy pelvic tilt.
As likely as all of these possible causes appear, they might only be symptoms of a deeper underlying problem located in my feet. Turns out I supinate when I walk, especially on my right side. Foot supination, also known as foot underpronation, can cause trouble much farther up, chiefly in the knees and hips. Then again, the supination could just be a symptom of one, or of a combination of many, of the problems I detailed above.
When it comes to finding the true source of my hip trouble, it appears everything is connected to everything else, just like in that annoying kid’s song. The foot bone really is connected to the ankle bone and everything else, all the way to the base of my spine, to that small vertical wall of bone I didn’t even know had. My hip trouble is like an onion – I peel back layer only to find another layer waiting to be peeled. Every exclamation mark I have managed to locate also yields two question marks. The quest reeks of perpetuity – a veritable never-ending story. But rest assured, none of this dispirits me. I will find the answer one day – which will probably be the same day the doctor tells me my hip needs replacing.
Note added: Back in the late summer/early fall, a reader of this blog suggested I become familar with Danny Dreyer’s Chi Walking technique as a possible recovery tool. Though I have found it practically impossible to adopt Dreyer’s walking technique as my own, his series of videos helped make me aware of my supination and my many other underlying posture problems while walking, which has been an immense help.