Hip Impingement




6 – 12 wks

SCFE / Labral tear

What is hip impingement?

Hip impingement is when your ball and socket joint gets squashy. And painful. Normally associated with sharp jabby pain at the front of your hip and sometimes an ache into your groin. Think of Hip Impingement as having too many people on a bus. Feels congested and uncomfortable. Bit too limited with personal space. Maybe a bit stinky. Can be VERY sore – to the level that some folks feel like they can’t put weight on their leg or like the hip is going to collapse. Wobbly hip = not good.

Why does hip impingement happen?

There is a big genetic component with hip impingement. Sometimes, it’s just as simple as: ‘you picked the wrong parents’. Without getting too fancy there is two main types: CAM and Pincer. They have similar symptoms but they refer to different ball-socket relationships. CAM Is more common in men, pincer in women. Often there is also an ‘overuse’ component – especially in sport that involves lots of bending over and twisting (hockey, tennis, football). Then there is a mechanical ‘input’ which is often related to weak butt muscles.

What can you do about hip impingement?
Hip Physiotherapy in Newcastle.

1. Gentle stretching. Get the front of your hip moving. GENTLY. Opening stretches like yoga warrior poses or butterfly stretches will help your hip move a bit better.
2. Avoid deep chairs. It probably won’t feel great to sit in deep lounges or bucket seats on a car. Also if you sit for your job – that might just poke the bear too – so try and stand up regularly.
3. Get a better bum. Gluteus medius needs to be spectacular (that’s the bum muscle that helps open your hip out). Also this seems counter-intuitive but often you’ll need stronger hip flexors and groin muscles too. Just worth waiting for a while to get these ones working as they can be pretty grouchy with Hip Impingement.
4. Tape it up. Its worth asking your physio if taping your thigh bone out might help encourage less pain and get the hip feeling more ‘normal’.
5. Thumbs out. It sounds uncomfortable but hands-on physio can help to calm-the-farm of the groin muscles and the joint itself. Try manual therapy for a few sessions to help reduce pain and improve your movement.

How long will hip impingement take?

We often see change around the 5-6 wk mark but the muscle training part can take 3 months. So, your pain should start trending down fairly quickly but strength takes time. If you’ve got a history of hip dysplasia (ask your parents – they’ll know) or a scan that shows the impingement is gnarly – this might take a bit longer. Either way, there are things we can do to help!


Don’t miss SCFE. This is a ‘slipped capital femoral epiphyses’. It’s unusual but can happen in young males who are active and with a heavy body type (think rugby). Another condition to consider is a torn labrum (cartilage). This is a tricky one because lots of folks have a tear in their labrum but no pain (!) So make sure that this is the actual cause of your problem – not just a finding on a scan that doesn’t track what’s actually going on with your body. Best to chat to your physio.

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If pain persists, you may require the help of a professional physio. Contact Brightside Physio to make an appointment.


Brightside Physio
90 Elder St
Lambton (Newcastle)
NSW 2299

New location!
15 Lambton Rd
Broadmeadow (Newcastle)
NSW 2292



Find parking via De Vitre Street and walk down side alley to Elder Street entrance.



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Call us on (02) 4062 8862