T Nation

Lower Body Morning Stiffness


For some time now i have been experiencing very bad lower body morning stiffness when i wake.

Im 30, i didnt think i was in bad shape, always need to lose a little fat (thats my major problem) i have actually stopped the weights 90% and been concentrating on bodyweight exercises because of this problem. I wantto be lean, light and fast,agile and strong, mainly for football and for health.

An example of my problem was this morning. I planned to get up early and go for a run and encorporate sprints. I did a yoga class last night which was great for stretching. I woke this morning and was soo stiff!!! I tried to loosen as quick as i could cos i wanted to get going, doing various different stretches which i do everyday. Went out and just couldnt run as good as normal, tried a sprint and pulled my right quad and my lower back started aching.

This isnt because of yoga, but i get this everyday. I need to get quick and lean for football and this seems to be getting worse.

Im waiting for a nhs physio appointment but they generally arent very good and i cant afford a private one.

I have Pavels Tsatsoulines books and have recently discovered mobilitywod.

Does anyone have any suggestions as i dont seem to be improving?


So you don't have any stiffness later in the day?


stiff in lower back,glutes,hips???


Yeah, but not as bad. I try to stretch as much as possible. Its just so much worse in the morning


Lower back, hips, glutes, but worst of all in my hamstrings. Also in my hip flexors.

My hamstrings always seem kinda painful aswell, even once stretched, especially my left one


I would go with glute weakness/dysfunction here.

There are so many different things it "could" be. However I will tell you that proper glute function is a keystone of good biomechanics.

If you have a problem anywhere on your body the first thing you should do is to make sure your glutes are strong.

Strong glutes will remove a massive amount of stress from areas it shouldnt be.

Stop stretching your hamstrings.


I sometimes have problems activating my glutes and keeping them contracted. I can easily contract them but not for long.

So what are your saying? Strengthen? Stretch and foam roll them? Both?

I feel as if i have to stretch them (my hamstrings), its almost like habit now.

This morning i had extra sleep and had to go out and walk for a short time and i could feel how tight my hamstrings were. It didnt hurt but was very stiff and restricting. There is no way i could have run anywhere this morning, or even now. My back feels ok but not my hamstrings
Its not showing any signs of letting healing


You on fish oil buddy? Maybe start every session with agile 8, magnificent 7 and a foam roll? Make sure your dressed warmly when training in winter. Do you eat lots of vegetables?


Remember that actually tight hamstrings are not very common and there are many other reasons to feel this. Whenever you have a muscle strain or something that feels overly tight the first thing you should always think is that area is being overused because something else is not working enough. That is 9/10 problems in the body.

Go on all fours, take some of the arch out of your back so that their is barely an arch there, more flat. Push your heel straight back using your butt and keeping your butt engaged the whole time. You dont need to squeeze the shit out of it. Make sure you maintain that back position, that is the key. If you can maintain the proper back position you will be able to feel your glutes working better. Do 12 reps per side, you should feel the glutes, get up and reassess hammys, they should feel a bit better right away.


Hey birdy, i foam roll and stretch before gym sessions but dont get a chance before football as its at work and i wouldnt take my foam roller to work lol

Im always hot anyway so thats not really an issue and i have only re started taking my fish oil again after a month or so.
I eat veg but i suppose i could always eat more.

I wasnt able to train and cant train now till wednesday so im hoping it will give me the opportunity to rest and hopefully that will help.

I have a footy tournament soon. 6 a side and im worried, cos if there is a long enough break between games i have started to stiffen up really quick.