The glute muscles are a muscle group that is often forgotten about and overlooked for causing problems and pain in other muscle groups. The three pain muscles – gluteus maximus, gluteus medius and gluteus minimus – are large muscles and are key to mobility and stability and is where a lot of our power comes from. These muscles are often missed out and forgotten about during consultations by our clients as a lot of the time the pain and irritation they feel is in a different area of the body, however the root of the pain ( or an important factor) is the glute muscles. They are also forgotten about when strengthening and stretching, both key things that help reduce pain and tension in this area and improve functionality. Another key muscle here is the piriformis muscle which is underneath your gluteus maximus and runs directly over the sciatic nerve and is often the main cause for lower back and leg pain. When the muscle tightens and shortens, it causes the sciatic nerve to become pinched,irritating the nerve and causing pain and numbness down the leg, which is commonly mistaken for sciatica. Key factors in causing Piriformis syndrome can be – Poor posture, lack of strength in the Gluteus maximus and poor stability. There are a few common symptoms that can be looked out for – Tenderness in the gluteus maximus, local pain over the piriformis radiating pain in the glutes and down the leg and some reduced strength in the affected leg. The best way to relieve glute and piriformis pain is – Ice, Massage, Stretch, strengthen, repeat!