3 Reasons Why You Should Have Your Patients Hip Thrust

The Hip Thrust exercise has become very popular in the Strength & Conditioning world thanks to the work done by Brett Contreras.  I have found that this exercise is also a valuable intervention in the rehab world.  Here are three reasons why you should have your patients hip thrust:

1) For Glute Activation

  • Isolates glute activation in the sagittal plane
  • Places hip extension perpendicular to the resistance (gravity)
  • Max Glute EMG occurs at 0 degrees of hip extension
  • Removes hamstring influence (active insufficiency)
  • Can be used for post-activation potential prior to more complex exercises (hip hinge, squat, etc.)

2) For Hip/Lumbar Dissociation

  • Most hip and back patients live with their butts in their backs (substituting lumbar extension for hip extension)
  • The Hip Thrust takes out distal influences and can be used as an assessment and intervention for hip/lumbar dissociation
  • Palpate the patient’s lumbar spine as they perform the exercise, make them stop once it goes from hip extension to lumbar extension (patient education)

3) It’s Safe

  • It’s an unloaded, bodyweight movement
  • It’s a simple movement – less complex than the hip hinge or squat

As with all exercises, the success depends on a thorough assessment and proper patient selection.  If your patient needs glute strengthening or needs to work on hip extension movement patterns, then the Hip Thrust may be a great choice.

Here is an example Hip Thrust progression I use with my patients.

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