If you think like you have been intentionally violated during any massage session, contact the business management and/or owners, the state Massage & Bodywork Therapy Board, and call the local authorities to report the person involved. The North Carolina Massage and Bodywork Therapy Board website for filing a complaint can be found here.
There is a lot of stigma when it comes to having your glutes massaged. Some people view the hips from a highly sexual point of view. For this obvious reason, the hip region can be a sensitive area for clients and therapists alike. It can also lead to people never having their back and hip pain relieved. Clients may be nervous that their butt or genitals may become exposed, or that the therapist working on them may be trying to “seek a peek” or even assault them in some way. Likewise, therapists may skip this area altogether for fear of such accusations or because they are just plain uncomfortable.
The Good News
The good news is that there are truly professional massage therapists out there! Professional MTs who are trained, skillful, and diligent in proper draping techniques, knowledgeable about the anatomy, and thoroughly practiced and efficient in palpating these muscles can allow the client to feel safe and secured. When these criteria are met, they can do the important work of ‘releasing’ the muscles in the hip region.
With that in mind, here are some reasons not to skip massaging the gluteals.
1. Most low back pain can be attributed to Gluteus Maximus, Gluteus Medius, and Gluteus Minimus
These three muscles contribute to most cases of pain in the low back and sacral area. These are three powerful muscles that are responsible for stabilizing your hips and move your thigh in all of it’s possible motions. Because of this, there are a lot of different fiber directions within these muscles and if the any one of them is not functioning well, it can be its own worst nightmare.
2. The gluteals aren’t the only muscles being effected
There are dozens of skeletal muscles that connect to or are directly influenced by the gluteals and their attachment sites. Example 1. Ischemic compression of the gluteals also applies ischemic compression to the six very important muscles that work with the glutes to externally rotate your leg. Example 2. ‘Releasing’ the gluteals can help to ‘release’ tight hamstrings. Example 3. The gluteals influence the tilt of the pelvis and therefore directly influence the tonus of the quadriceps. It also influences how your feet contact the earth, how your back muscles influence your spine and ribs, and the tightness in the muscles of your jaw. And on and on and on.
3. May reduce knee pain
This is similar to #2 but worthy of it own spot on this list. Reducing tightness in the gluteals may help to relieve the feeling of a tight IT brand and thus relieve pain in the knee joint. In fact, Travell and Simons’ (the go-to resource for muscle pain) list Gluteus Minimus as the very place to look for pain in the outside and back of the knee joint.
4. Gives you more range of motion in the hip
Releasing tightness in the hip muscles opens up space in that region and allows of greater ranges of movement. This means your squats or lunges may be deeper, and you may be able to run/walk with greater ease. Many clients report having the pleasant sensation of “floating” on their legs after releasing the hip region.
5. Stronger hips
This may come as a surprise but decreasing chronic contraction of the gluteals actually makes them stronger. If your glutes are tired and weak from over being chronically over used, they are still… tired and weak, thus you are tired and weak. Put another way, if your glutes have developed trigger points in 30% of the muscle fibers, your muscle is 30% (or more) weaker. Releasing the chronic holding patterns on those fibers allows them to function properly, which will make you stronger.
6. You’ll sleep better
Relieving tension anywhere in the body helps to create more relaxation in the body and this is especially true for relieving tension in the glutes. More relaxation leads to better, more restful sleep. And since sleep is where the body recharges and rebuilds muscle, this also adds to #5 making you stronger.
7. It feels good
Having less tension in the glutes and surrounding muscles is incredibly relieving. And although the technique used to release them may be uncomfortable, the experience afterward is usually extremely pleasant, if not wonderful.