MUSCLE OF THE MONTH – Gluteus Medius
I have just got back from a great teacher training course with Celest Pereira where we learnt about anatomy, but not in the way I was taught when I first trained as a teacher. As Celest has a background in physiotherapy she brought a different perspective to the training and so I learnt how important it is to strengthen our stabilisers in our body. Not just for improving our yoga postures and achieving those more advanced poses, but for general health of the body. When our stabilisers are weak it can affect other areas. If the gluteus medius is weak it can affect our lower back and knees.
You can locate your gluteus medius as the lateral part of the upper section of your bum. It is a stabilising muscle of the pelvis when standing on one leg and when walking. It is involved in abduction (moving away from the midline of the body) of the thigh. It is also involved in the internal rotation of the thigh. Virabhadrasana III (Warrior 3) is one of the postures where this muscle is used to square the pelvis. Other poses that work the gluteus medius are Ardha Chandrasana (half moon pose) and Vrksasana (tree pose).
The following action particularly helps you to locate and strengthen this muscle – have a go! Standing in Edka Pada Adho Mukha Svanasana (3 legged dog) take the leg that’s in the air out to the side away from the midline and feel it working………………