Massage Therapy for Buttock Pain

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Pain in the lower back, buttock, hip or leg regions are often caused by inflamed, irritated, sprains, strains or other problems involving the gluteal and other associated muscles, along with the connective tissues that affect nerve tissue. The problem commonly occurs when someone has been relatively inactive, fails to adequately warm muscles and then engages in some type of strenuous activity. Unfortunately, injury often occurs. Massage therapy effectively promotes healing and alleviates the pain.

Trigger Points

Within the complex network of muscles that cover the buttock, hip and lower back regions lie a series of trigger points where muscles commonly develop knots that cause the pain and discomfort in these areas. Troublesome points are often located in the gluteus minimus and piirformis muscles. Gluteus minimus trigger points are found in the middle of the lower buttock, which covers the icshium bone. When the piriformis muscle tightens and spasms, people experience sciatica. One of the prirformis trigger point regions lies on either side of the middle of the tail bone. Another trigger point lies on the outer region of the gluteal muscles, which is located in the outer hip area.

Massaging Trigger Points

Buttock pain is easily alleviated by locating and massaging the appropriate trigger points. Find the trigger point by gently pressing down until feeling soreness or tenderness. The techniques involved in alleviating the knot involve applying firm pressure to the point followed by massaging the area in a small, circular motion. After locating the trigger point, use a thumb or an index and the second finger to apply sustained pressure. Initially, the action typically produces a sharp pain.

Alternative methods of applying pressure include using the side of a fist or using a tennis ball. A tennis ball conveniently applies direct pressure while enabling circular massage. Continue applying pressure and massaging the area until the tenderness subsides.

Trigger Point Knot Causes

Unless an individual regularly climbs stairs, walks or jogs up and down hills, or performs strength training exercises, the large muscle groups on the lower body weaken from lack of use. The gluteal muscles in particular are susceptible to weakening, For most people, walking generally occurs along the level terrain of sidewalks. Then, after walking in sand, snow skiing, water skiing or engaging in activity requiring constant body balance, the muscles undergo stress, tighten and spasm.

Anyone can massage trigger points and alleviate the knots and discomfort in their own body or in the body of a loved one. However, if pain continues or gets worse, individuals should consult with a health care provider who may recommend an appointment with a professional chiropractor or with a licensed massage therapist.


Cite this page: N., Sam M.S., "Massage Therapy for Buttock Pain," in, March 25, 2016, (accessed September 26, 2022).