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leanne

seeking reassurance regarding hip higher than the other, leg longer th

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leanne

Hi everyone,

I have always noticed through life that my right hip was tighter than the left but ignored it thinking that's all it was.

 

I visited a chiropractor yesterday who told me that not only was my left leg shorter than the right (which, I already knew from seeing a physio last year), but that my right hip was higher than the left hip.

 

He gave me an x-ray and I could see that the right hip was indeed higher than the left.

I go back Friday for the full results and what can be done.

 

In ballet I notice it and especially notice it in pilates when lying on my right side and trying to stack my hips ontop of eachother, causes pain.

 

I try stretching but it's so tight that when I cross my left foot on my right leg (flat so the knee is level if you get me?) that's fine but when I put right foot on left leg it's really hard for me to do so and the knee is not flat/level...

 

I am seeing my doctor next week and I will ask for a referal to the hospital because I don't feel a chiropractor can solve this.

 

Has anyone else got this problem? What can be done about it? I feel really deflated about it.

 

I'm also upset because the chiropractor told me my left foots arch has fallen slightly due to that leg being shorter. :) My teacher admires my "high arches" but now I feel sad that the arch on left foot has slightly fallen :shrug:

 

Thanks for any advice you can give.

Leanne

 

P.S. I forgot to mention, I'm also suffering from very tight hamstrings! My pilates teacher thinks they are bad but I stretch and they are not improving, any advice!?

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mermaid7176

I have the same thing happening- only it is my right hip that is higher than my left. And, my right arch has also fallen due to this problem. I don't have solutions or answers, but have found that I just work around the problem. Strengthening through pilates helps me a lot, as well as frequent stretching. Everyone has a side that is better than the other- I definitely notice this even more so due to my hips and legs. On one side, my turnout is noticeably worse. But, I know that I will never be in a professional ballet company, so I don't worry about it. I just work with what I have and keep stretching and working on strengthening- especially my weaker side.

 

Shoe lifts on one side had been suggested to me- but I chose not to use them because I have lived with this for so long, my body has adapted. For me, they told me that there is nothing that can be done to "fix" the problem. It just is what it is.

 

Sorry that I couldn't be more help, but as I read your post, I found myself nodding and saying "yup, that's me too" and had to respond :)

 

Marisa

Edited by Redbookish
to remove unnecessary quotation of preceding post

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leanne

Thank you so much for your response!

Are you en pointe? If so, how does your fallen arch feel? Is it ok or is that foot weaker? I have found trouble en pointe with the foot with the fallen arch :) with a tendency to sickle!

 

Do you also have the same issue like I have regarding sitting with foot on opposite leg, and even sitting cross legged? Noticing a difference in how the hip/knee is off the floor more than the "good" side!?

 

How long have you done ballet for? I also have trouble doing pirouettes due to the one leg longer problem, one hip higher problem :( hmph!

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Balletlove

I read your post with great interest... If I had read this a month ago I would have nodded along with you for a lot of your post (except for the fallen arch bit) but my own very recent experience would say that before you write it off completely to being a fact of life that the one leg is longer and as a result the one hip higher maybe you want to try another chiro??? I did and although I am now dealing with what feels like some serious stability issues at ballet which I am going to post about just now, for the first time in almost 14 years my hips are level, thanks to two VERY simple stretches I have lengthened my hamstrings and my glutes a LOT and I suddenly understand so many "issues" that I have had so much better.

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tutu2you

I, too, have one hip higher than the other due to leg length differences. I've seen a chiro, but do not have the funds to keep going every week. Can you share the stretches you were given, as they might be helpful to the rest of us as well. Thanks in advance.

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Balletlove

Sure, they are both quite simple but the challenge is in getting them just right so that they stretch the right "bits", I will do my best to explain...

 

The first one:

Lie down on your back with your right leg straight, but relaxed... take the left leg knee bent (relaxed completely) and pull the knee towards the right shoulder with the left hand (the left hand is behind the knee then very gently with the right hand pull the ankle towards you... you should feel it in the glutes, if you are not feeling it in the glutes you are not doing it right, hold for about 40 seconds and then repeat with the other leg!

I have done a similar stretch at pilates before but we were keeping the ankle and the knee more in a straight line (towards the side) and the knee going towards the left shoulder - that one feels nice in the hips but doesnt work the glutes like this one... the trick seems to be in getting the knee aimed towards the opposite shoulder.

 

The second one:

Lie down on your back with both legs straight and relaxed, bring the left one up with the knee towards?at the shoulder and the foot in the same direction as the right one... now extend the left knee up towards the ceiling (or over your shoulder depending on your flexibility), you can use a towel hooked over your foot to help you pull (gently), pull down and over your shoulders as the correct feeling hold for 40 seconds and then do the other one. Again you should feel this deep in the glutes and down the hamstrings but more in the part of the hamstrings which ends in the glutes and not the part behind the knees.

 

I am currently doing these exercises at least twice a day 40 seconds X 4 doesnt even equal four minutes so not too difficult to fit in and the improvement in a week has been super... plenty enough to keep me motivated to keep going! These are purely just to stretch out and are not strengthening, that will apparently come later.

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BalletMom8

I presume the doctors ruled out scoliosis, which can make one hip higher than the other.

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Redbookish

It's quite normal to have one leg longer than the other: our bodies aren't at all symmetrical. A lot of professional dancers have some quite distinct differences in leg length!

 

Now you know this, you probably have to relearn some things, because it sounds as though the general tightness of your lower body is because your body's learnt to adjust and compensate for the difference in leg length.

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leanne

I don't think I have scoliosis as that would of showed on the x-ray? And the physio I saw last year would of been able to tell I think?

However when I see my doctor next week I will ask! Because I'm also suffering from sciatica in my left side (which is helped by ballet, thankfully!)

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leanne

Balletlove, thank you very much for the exercises I will certainly give them a go!

 

I'm so glad to hear I'm not alone with this, I know one leg longer is very common but having a hip higher and abit of a fallen arch really deflated me lol

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tutu2you

And from what my ortho told me, it depends on how much difference there is in the leg lengths. I know mine is more than an inch, and he says that is what has caused me so much pain for so many years, 12 years of plantar fasciitis as well, I think. The ortho said people can readily accommodate 1/2 inch difference or so, but more than that, and problems arise. I know I wear custom orthotics and a heel lift just to make up some of the difference.

 

I, too, am unable to sit with crossed legs and sitting for a great length of time without a pillow/lift of some type on the shorter side causes extreme pain by night.

 

Balletlove, I will try the exercises tonight. I am anxious to try them.

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clairerpullen

I was looking through here to find something on this specific topic - hooray for ballet talk for dancers!

 

I'm in a similar situation; I had hit a wall where my developpes a la seconde would go so far and no higher, and despite a ton of work on it, one of my feet was never quite on the block of my pointe shoe. After a set of x-rays and some testing my chiro has confirmed my hips are way out of whack, in parts chronically inflamed and in sum are a bit of a problem! I am also v. lucky to have a chiro who works specifically with dancers. So the plan is to undo all the damage done by compensating for the hip placement - same as you, tight hamstrings that just don't respond to stretching. It's interesting you talk about turns being a problem - I mentioned this to my chiro as well, and apart from the leg-length issue, that kind of problem apparently also messes up your proprioception, making turns and balances harder.

 

The funny thing is I never would have gone to see anyone about this because I wasn't in pain and had just accepted that one hip would be higher than the other for the rest of my life. The entire way I dance (and do everything, I suppose) is built around compensating for a problem that hopefully can be fixed.

 

After only a bit of treatment, and religiously doing the warm up and stretches I've been given, the difference in my pointe work is obvious. All the time I spent angst-ing about my foot and turnout on that side appears to have been useful, because now my hips are moving properly I have two strong feet. Not sure yet how the developpes are going to pan out, but we'll see.

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Balletlove

clairepullen, can I ask what warm up and exercises you were given to help with the pointe work?

 

If done slowly and carefully, I think that the exercises can only help especially if you have tight glutes! I must mention though that the chiro was also releasing the glutes for me so that may have contributed to my good progress.

I always battled with the port de bras forward that one does at the barre at the end of our plie combinations, well on Tuesday when we did this I was expecting to just touch the floor (the best that I can do and I really had to work very hard to get to that)... well I just did the port de bras forward as normal BUT I clearly went a lot further down than normal as I scraped my knuckles on the floor just lightly skinning them :blushing::yucky:

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leanne

Just an update everyone.

 

Went to see my chiro today for diagnosis, the right hip higher is caused by the back and my other leg being shorter as I already knew.

My spine is leaning to the left (the shorter leg) and causing a curve that way, but also I have a bend in the spine creating an S shape.

It's at stage 1 but if left will get worse I imagine.

 

Sad part is he wants me to do 24 sessions costing £690! I just don't have the money. :whistling: I'm very upset.

 

I decided to go see my doctor, get a referal to hospital and hope something else can be done.

 

I just cannot afford that amount of money. And it would be 3 sessions a week to start with and due to the fact I'm a make-up artist, always on my feet, don't drive, carrying a heavy bag with my job I won't have time to take off work to heal properly...

 

It's a catch 22 really. I can just hope the doctor can help.

 

Plus I've been hearing mixed reviews about treatment from a chiro... Some say they forked out all the money and the treatment didn't help or solve the problem.

 

I want to solve the problem! Maybe I should get a consultation with an osteopath too?

 

I don't have health insurance but now I'm seriously thinking I'm going to need it.

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mermaid7176

Sorry for the delayed response. I have actually seen several chiros regarding this. I do have some scoliosis (one doctor said that wasn't the correct term for it- which is why I didn't use it before). I am returning to ballet after many years, never made it onto pointe as a child- and that has been a life-long dream of mine. So, I am returning to my love of ballet and hoping to realize an old dream.

 

Leanne- ouch! That is a lot of money. Hopefully, your doctor will be able to give you a referral and it will all work out.

 

I didn't mention earlier that I used to have more of a problem with hip turnout and tightness, before I had my first child 10 months ago. Now, My hips, everything really, are looser and I am finding the hip/leg issue to be less of a problem. If all else fails... :)jk.

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