Tight or stiff glutes?

January 8, 2022

Hi Guru,

I’ve been treated (very well!) at Six Physio before for tension in both quads and glutes and am due to come back for a sports massage soon to keep on top of it. Lately I’ve started to notice small, minor twitches every now and again, mostly in my glutes but occasionally in my hamstrings. I’m wondering if these are related to the glute tightness, and if I should do anything like mobility exercises or specific stretches for them?

There’s no pain, it kind of feels like a muscle is trying to release itself, or being a bit hyperactive. In case it’s relevant, I do tend to carry a bit of tension all over and I’ve also been told that my glutes might be doing too little work in activities like jogging and hillwalking, leaving smaller muscle groups to compensate, which is why for example I can get DOMS in my calves.

I’m in my thirties and have no other symptoms. I’m feeling generally strong and healthy and I’m active with jogging, barre and a little bit of yoga a few times a week (though in a couple of runs lately I struggled as my glutes felt very seized up at the start, but loosened up as I warmed up). I’m also, like many others at the minute, working from home in an ok but not ideal setup for a full-time, desk-based job.



January 8, 2022

Hi Naomi

I’ve just had a read through your notes and so it’s good to complete the circle.

Here’s the rub….whilst I think you may feel as if your glutes are tight, I probably think they are protectively stiff. The end product is the same, but what you do is different!

I think if you just stretch you’ll feel better for a short period then the same symptoms return because you’re not dealing with the cause of your symptoms. Whereas if you get better mobility in your thoracic spine (all the WFH) and then do some gluteal stability work (lunges,squats etc) then you deal with the cause and your symptoms will get better…

Have a look at the thoracic mobility drills here:


Plus some nice glute stability stuff here:


Hope this helps


The Guru

Guru Responded

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