What is Snapping Hip Syndrome?

Have you ever been running and heard snapping in your hip every time you try to change direction or take a stride? While it may be a pain-free snapping sensation, it is an annoyance that should be addressed so it does not interfere with your function and take you off the road! There are various causes for this condition, which should be evaluated and treated by your physical therapist. PTs are specialists in determining movement impairments.

Snapping hip syndrome can be categorized into two main groups:

1.) Internal snapping: may be caused by the iliopsoas tendon, which is located in the front of your hip, abnormally sliding over internal structures of your hip.

2.) External snapping: primarily caused by the subluxation (or abnormal movement) of the iliotibial band over the side aspect of your hip.

Those who are at the highest risk of developing snapping hip syndrome often include athletes who engage in repetitive rotation and cutting movements, weight lifters, and runners usually between the ages of 15 and 40 years old. Physical findings usually include hip weakness, mechanical and musculature imbalances, and overtraining. Conservative management with physical therapy that includes exercise, stretching, and hands-on therapy resolves most cases.

In rare cases when conservative care isn’t effective, lengthening of the tendon can be performed arthroscopically. That’s why listening to your body’s first symptoms and seeking proper treatment are so important – though often very difficult for avid runners and athletes. Taking these steps is critical to reducing the risk of further injury and avoiding surgery.

For more information on snapping hip syndrome, contact us at info@sptny.com.