Piriformis Syndrome

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04/11/2004 at 16:47
I found this website link helpful

I have just had my second session of massage and it certainly does help. I just got back 30 mins ago and the difference in how my muscles feel is amazing. I don't have that dull ache that I had when I got out of bed thios morning.
Have also been doing the stretches that RogerDodge has posted on this topic ( see above )and am seeing an improvement...slowly but surely.

Patricia, yours doesn't sound like pirifomis syndrome but what does your physio think ?
Helen, try the self diagnosis in the link that I have posted. When I did it, I felt a pain in my buttock etc.

The main thing though is that if you have any pain DON'T RUN as you will exacerbate the problem. Listen to your body...something is wrong and your body is telling you enough is enough.

I have found the massage sessions to be very beneficial and have even felt my muscles 'ping' back into place whilst being massaged. I suggest finding a good sports massage therapist...but they don't come cheap.
04/11/2004 at 16:50
Ooops I mean look at RogerDodge's posted link on the previous page !
04/11/2004 at 17:05
04/11/2004 at 19:48
Thanks for reply, runningnut. My physio did not really pinpoint the problem but did loads of stretches and said i seemed pretty flexi, back monday. Did suffer with sciatica for 2 years down the outside of the right leg. This is pain is not the same, though feels like trapped nerve at the front or inside thigh. Have been doing the stretches that RD posted and not too bad today but have not run. My physio told me to go for a 2 mile run few days after treatment and i did yesterday, felt fine when running and stretching afterwards, but felt the pain afterward and it feels tight round the front leg. sorry dont know all the tech names for muscles, well know the names just not the right places. again thanks.
04/11/2004 at 19:57
Thanks rodgerdodge and running nut, i have tried the self diagnosis and think that this is what I have but do I have to stop running and for how long,am off to try the stretches, and will concentrate on core muscles with my big rubber ball. I will try to save the price of a massage, will keep you posted
04/11/2004 at 20:02
I would seriously take a rest from running as you may be doing more damage to the injury.
It is so frustrating not running I know ( am climbing the walls myself with my blasted injury ) but better to rest and heal the injury than risk permanent damage and the risk of not being able to run at all.
There is also the possibilty of it being referred pain and the cause is elsewhere.....that is why I would recommend a decent sports injury masseur. They get right in there and can release trapped nerves, contracted muscles etc.
I discovered that the pain in my buttock and leg is due to a lower back muscle which has tensed and contracted is the root of the problem. Since I have had my massages the pain is infinately better.
04/11/2004 at 20:08
Helen...if you read any running website the first thing they tell you is that if "you feel pain : stop running"
The pain in my buttock flared up 7 days ago and I hoped against hope that I would be able to run through it.....but all the advice that I received said to the contrary.
It's a bummer for sure and I totally understand your frustration as I am there with you....but abstinence from running seems to be the major key to recovery.
It sucks ):
05/11/2004 at 08:24
I'm slightly at odds with the "stop running" suggestions. Of course the injury you have may well be different to the one I had, so my comments may not apply to you.

In my case, it was a tight Piriformis muscle which became painful in the latter stages of a run and afterwards. I would say that the pain was of a "niggle" level and certainly not excrutiating. I found that with gentle running and frequent stops to stretch, this improved a lot and is now completely gone. What I am saying is that gentle running will help work and elongate that muscle. In my case I was new to running and as my distance and time on legs increased so did the niggles. If the pain is as a result of an injury, then rest is always advisable, but I never stay too immobile.

As runningnut says, it is always worth seeking expert advice, if you can find a GP who runs, that is perfect. Whenever I've been to my GP with a running related issue, he has just said "well stop running". As a computer consultant, I dont think my customers would be too excited with the advice "well just turn the PC off!"

Good luck with it..
05/11/2004 at 12:54
Thanks again for all the advice, I am going to stop completely for a week and do all the stretches. I did a bit last night and definately slept better , the link advice about not sleeping on my front helped and with a pillow under my knees.Will get massagein a week if no improvement, big thanks for all advice and sympathy
12/11/2004 at 22:31
Have had this injury diagnosed too. The advice was to stretch and stop running for a couple of weeks and see how it goes. Have been cycling instead which gives me some satisfaction. Have any of you found cycling ok with this injury?

The worst pain for me is when I am driving the car. It can be quite painful after half an hour and I have a 1 hour drive to work every day. If I lean over forwards and to the left in the drivers seat I get quite a sharp pain at the join of my buttock/ hamstring.
12/11/2004 at 22:48
I had exactly the same symptons too ! I didn't run for 10 days, have been having massages and have just started gentle running again. So far so good and the pain has gone but I just have some stiffness in my buttock and I am stretching galore pre and post runs. The massages have been a huge help : not cheap but as long as it works I don't care.
I am easing back into my runs very gently as I don't want to get injured again.
This time last week the pain was so bad I was convinced that I would never run again.
I read somewhere that cycling can actually make it worse because you are putting pressure on your buttock and aggravating the injury.
My heart goes out to you as it sucks not being able to run. I am keeping everything crossed that the pain will stay away and never return again !
Good luck fellow piriformite.
12/11/2004 at 22:49
Oh..and I also bought a heat pack and that helps BIG time.
17/11/2004 at 18:53
Thanks runningnut. Where and when do you use the heat pad? I assume it is applied directly to the affected area. I am now worried about the cycling, I think I am going to get the attentions of a professional and get this sorted. The really annoying thing is that I can still run, unlike previous injuries like calf strain which stopped me in my tracks there and then and the source of injury and cure is much easier to prescribe. I was really naughty today as I took part in my x country league just to keep the points up. I ran quite well considering I was holding back a bit and that I have missed running for 2 weeks. My buttock feels tender and tight tonight so I am going to pay for it!

Hope things are improving for you runningnut.
17/11/2004 at 19:25
Hi stockie,
I bought one of those headpads that you heat up in the microwave and pop into a pouch that has velcro on it. I velcro it on and wear it whenever I am at home. It is so soothing. I always apply it to the injured area in the evening and I find that the next morning the aching has gone. If you can get one I would recommend it 100%.
I would also advise getting professional advice but make sure it is someone who specializes in sports injuries. As I have said before in this thread although the massages don't come cheap in my opinion it is money well spent. I am sure that my recovery has been hastened by regular massages. I am due another one on Friday !
For me the pain has gone but I feel stiffness in my buttock afte a run which goes within 24 hours.
I only started running again a little over a week ago. I am still holding back and taking it gently gradually building up the mileage again: very frustrating as I was running 18-20 miles some week-ends for my marathon training.
I totally empathize with you as I missed running for the 10 days that I didn't run. I convinced myself that I would never be able to run again !
Even more frustrating must be the fact that the pain starts after a run and not during it.
When I first was injured I naively thought that maybe I could sustitute running with using the stairmachine at the gym ....but after a session on the stair machine I was in agony.
Do you still have the pain when you are driving ?
Hope that this has been helpful. If it makes you feel any better you are not alone !
18/11/2004 at 16:44
Hi runningout,
Thanks for the advice and support. I will have to get a heatpad. The drive to work was fairly painfull this morning. I am contacting a clinic to get an appointment later, apparently sports injuries are of interest to them. I am cancelling my running commitments for the rest of the year as I am determined to start the New Year running. We have some important events from late January so I will aim for these.

Hope your recovery continues to go well, keep me posted.

18/11/2004 at 17:47
Hi Keith,

Injuries are sooo frustrating aren't they ? I think that you are doing the right thing and will be up and running again for the New Year.

My injury is gradually getting better and I am back to running 7 miles now and hope to be able to increase my mileage sooner rather than later as the marathon that I am running is in Jan 2005. Everytime I go out for a run I am willing my leg/ buttock not to hurt, twinge ot make itself known !

I am sure that with the heatpad, professional advice and maybe a few massages you will as right as rain...fingers crossed !

Thanks for your recovery wishes...same goes from me to you ;)


08/11/2011 at 21:14
Hi all,

This is my first post on here, thought I'd chip in!

I kinda self diagnosed myself with piriformis syndrome courtesy of YouTube! The physio confirmed it and explained that the pains I'd been getting in my leg was because of tightness pinching (?) on my sciatic nerve.

I'm told that the problem stemmed from the fact that I've got weak glutes and didnt use them when I ran. Seems to be a bit of a stock answer if you ask me!

Anyway. I've found two things which have helped me get back to running.

Firstly, the pigeon stretch: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EBGME2tRFp4

Secondly, this running technique program which I used to successfully get me back into running: http://www.kinetic-revolution.com/sixweekprogram/
Edited: 08/11/2011 at 21:15

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