How do I Avoid Hip Pain When Sitting?

Brandon May

Hip pain when sitting is usually a sign that there has been an injury or strain to the hip muscles or bones which has created tension in the body. Avoiding this pain can be as easy as experimenting with a new sitting posture or applying a small cushion underneath the sit bones while sitting. It is possible to fight pain in the hip muscles by choosing anti-inflammatory foods or herbs, which can reduce swelling due to injury or strain of the muscles. Those who suffer from hip bursitis may also benefit from various physical therapy exercises to relieve tension in the hip and also speed recovery from the condition.

Placing a cushion on a chair before sitting down may help someone avoid hip pain.
Placing a cushion on a chair before sitting down may help someone avoid hip pain.

Hip bursitis is a common condition which results from inflammation of the tendons of the hip muscles from injury or strain. This often creates hip pain when sitting, as the tension between the tendons becomes more compressed when external pressure is placed on the hip muscles. Bursitis is usually a noninfectious condition treated by injection and various stretching movements and light exercise, combined with eating anti-inflammatory foods. Strenuous exercise will only aggravate the condition which will provide even more pain when sitting down.

Gentle exercises may help treat injured hip bones.
Gentle exercises may help treat injured hip bones.

A hip injury due to exercise or accidents may also be associated with pain when sitting, so it is important to rest this area of the body until healed. Hip tendinitis may be the result of a hip injury due to repetitive movements associated with exercise which increase the inflammation between the tendons of the hip muscles. If hip pain when sitting continues to persist and even escalates, it is best to avoid strenuous exercise which involves the lower body and to speak with a medical professional for available recommendations. Light stretching exercises as denoted by physical therapists are also advised to aid the healing of the hip bones or muscles and to promote recovery.

Hip pain when sitting may be a sign of hip injury.
Hip pain when sitting may be a sign of hip injury.

Avoiding hip pain can be easily accomplished by placing a pillow or cushion underneath the sit bones to soften the effect of the pain in the hip. This will not treat the underlying condition causing the pain, but it is a temporary fix while sitting down for short or long periods. A correct sitting posture is necessary as well, by making sure the upper body is upright and the sit bones are evenly pressed into a soft surface beneath. Further adjustments to find the correct sitting posture may be made to alleviate any remaining pain in the hip.

Physical therapy can be used to treat hip injuries that cause pain while sitting.
Physical therapy can be used to treat hip injuries that cause pain while sitting.

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Discussion Comments


@lighth0se33 – Yes, it does! I had a lot of bothersome hip pain at night and during the day while I was pregnant.

It made walking difficult, but it also was hard to sit for hours at a time. So, there was basically no position that was comfortable.

For sitting, it helped a little to use an egg crate cushion. My hips weren't quite as painful when I sat on this.

Even after giving birth, I had hip pain for many months. For exercise, I swam, because that was the only kind of workout that didn't hurt my hips.


Can pregnancy increase your hip pain? Will your hips still ache after you've had the baby?


I've never heard of anyone having hip joint pain from sitting! Plenty of people I know complain about their butts being sore from sitting still for a long time, but they've never said anything about their hips.

I had no idea that this was an issue. Maybe just people with certain conditions or strains go through this.


I only have hip pain while sitting for long periods of time. During a regular work day, I get up at least every half hour, so I don't experience pain.

However, I recently had to attend a long conference, and my hips were killing me halfway through the first seminar. I didn't have a cushion with me, and those wooden chairs were brutal!

I took some ibuprofen and felt a little better. I guess the anti-inflammatory effect did its thing.

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