Yesterday we popped out to visit family for their birthdays. We have a spat of birthdays all at the same time.
So although a lazy weekend for us, I took the opportunity to try stairs out. As I don’t have any at home. Still using my walking stick and pulling up on a bannister too. I put my bad leg up first.
I can kinda do it, but I’m definitely relying heavily on the bannister, and the walking stick. So it’s no where near strong enough yet.
Coming down, I attempt to do one step after another, rather than down, both feet, down, both feet. This seems a little easier with weight transfer, but still the hip feels like it wants to give way. But gravity really helps coming down.
So it’s hydrotherapy tomorrow, so I know I’m going to be attempting the steps extra, as this is my weakness area from all the physio exercises.
Noting what muscles you use, help you visualise what is going on inside the hip.
When you walk upstairs you engage numerous muscles, these include hip flexors, iliopsoas, sartorius, rectus femoris, tensor fasciae latae and pectineus these are your hips and thighs; then the gluteus medius on your outer thighs; the gluteus maximus in your butt; the quadriceps group in the front of each thigh; hamstring muscles in the backs of your thighs; erector spinae along the spine of your lower back; plus the gastrocnemius, soleus and tibialis anterior in your calf and shin area.
There’s a lot going on, with everything that needs to be able to work together and efficiently. So it’s no wonder I have difficulty at the moment. I need to remember, these muscles have been cut at least 4 times in this one leg.
To explain what the hip flexors do, its as you’d expect, they are responsible for hip flexion as you lift your foot to the next step. The quads extend your knees when your legs straighten. The hamstrings, sartorius and gastrocnemius flex your knees. The gastrocnemius and soleus assist during plantar flexion, when you push up from a step, (here is my moment of weakness!! It wants to give way as I transfer all the weight to flex upwards) while the tibialis anterior is primarily responsible for dorsiflexion when your foot lands on a step.
Sometimes I wish I had stairs to practice more often with, but I have an aerobic step which I can make as low or as high as I can tolerate. So I may have to dig it out, and get a few steps in to practice each day.