Gainz not Painz: Sacroiliac Dysfunction (low back, hip, inner thigh pain)
by Jake Noel
I usually hear one of two stories when I’m working with someone suffering from S/I dysfunction (Sacroiliac dysfunction). The first story goes something like this, “I went to rip a deadlift off the floor (or hit a heavy squat) and I felt my back round slightly. Then, my low back and butt cheek started to hurt.” I also hear of pain in the groin and sometimes hip flexors / front hip, either way something happens to the lifter that causes pain . The other story I often hear is “I have no clue what I did. I’ve just been getting more and more pain in my back and hips and groin and my numbers have stalled for, like, no reason.” In either case, the lifter is likely dealing with differing forms of S/I imbalance; the former being the acute case, the latter being the chronic, slow burn into imbalance caused by a slew of issues ranging from sleeping position to “overtraining”.
The reason my very first article for RTS is about S/I dysfunction is because 8 out of 10 of the lifters I work with have developed some form of S/I imbalance (in my anecdotal observation). Approximately 100% of lifters could benefit from this article assuming they’re going to encounter S/I imbalance at some point because in the sport of Powerlifting.. The S/I is really the whole boat when it comes to bearing load in the squat and deadlift (assuming you’re executing the movements with even the slightest technical proficiency). In fact, S/I imbalance is so common in the sport, that it is safe to treat yourself like you have it, even if you’re not expressing the symptoms yet.