When is stretching your psoas muscles the right thing to do?
The answer is, never.
Even if you can get the psoas muscles to lengthen by stretching, stretching doesn't retrain muscles into healthy coordination and healthy tone.
The problem isn't that psoas muscles need stretching, but that they keep tightening and shortening, as controlled by muscle/movement memory. Muscle/movement memory makes them shorten and keep needing stretching.
For healthy tone, you need all of your muscles to be well-coordinated because they all work together in balance and movement.
So, the answer to, "When is stretching your psoas muscles the right thing to do?" is, "Never."
When may a diagnosis of "tight psoas muscles" be wrong or misleading?
Sometimes, tight psoas muscles are only part of the problem -- or not the underlying cause (despite the diagnoses of well-meaning practitioners and therapists). A twisted sacrum (sacro-iliac joint dysfunction), for example, produces psoas muscle symptoms; not knowing this fact, people may directly treat the psoas muscles and fail to get lasting relief -- or complete relief, or any relief. If you have the symptoms, below, you may have sacro-iliac joint dysfunction.
If you have some of them, click the preceding link and learn about the condition and what you need.
How do foot injuries cause psoas muscles to get tight?
An injury to leg or foot causes us to lift up the leg or foot and to hobble in walking; lifting the leg and hobbling involve the psoas muscles. Any injury that results in guarding a leg or foot may trigger psoas problems down the line.
How does excessive sitting and insufficient movement cause psoas muscles to get and stay tight?
Sitting for long periods at a high level of concentration with minimal movement sets the stage for the muscles of sitting to get conditioned to stay tight. It's a repetitive use situation that trains the brain to keep those muscles tight, automatically.
What do healthy psoas muscles do?
Healthy psoas muscles keep the pelvis and spine upright, when sitting, and help bring the knee straight-forward when the same side hip comes forward, when walking. If you watch most people, the knees turn outward when walking, indicating how widespread overtight psoas muscle problems are. You may also have noticed how good people look when they walk with knees tracking straight-forward (e.g., movie actor James Dean, dancer Fred Astaire).
How do abdominal strengthening and psoas stretching exercises affect the psoas muscles?
They don't, very much. Stretching doesn't work to normalize psoas muscle tone and produces only partial and temporary results, at best. Stretches fail to reach the psoas muscles and instead get intercepted by more surface muscles.
Abdominal exercises may prevent the pelvic tilt forward that comes from tight psoas muscles, but they also compress the abdominal contents, preventing fully upright movement or free breathing.
What can you do for yourself to end psoas muscle pain?
Retrain your control of the psoas other muscles closely involved in sitting, standing, and walking by means of training exercises that teach you that control by feel. See this page to purchase the program, Free Your Psoas. Lifetime Satisfaction Guarantee