Gluteal Amnesia

My back has been hurting for awhile. This makes me feel like I’m 87, which, for the record, I am not. After a couple months of trying different things to make it feel better, the doctor sent me to a physical therapist for the once over.

My PT, named Brian, figured out the problem and contorted my body in weird ways that stretched my back and magically made it feel markedly better. This was all well and good.

Then Brian showed me some exercises to improve my core strength. It’s been ignored far too long. So long, in fact, that some of my muscles are working overtime to compensate for other muscles that aren’t pulling their weight. I blame my children for this. My core liquefied in the service of bringing them into the world.

“It’s really common for people to get this,” Brian said, as I incorrectly did leg lifts on my stomach. “It’s called ‘gluteal amnesia’ and it happens when the glutes forget to fire and just kind of go to sleep, causing the muscles in the back to take over stabilizing the core.”

He said this with a completely straight face. That I had ‘gluteal amnesia.’ Because that’s an actual thing. And they named it that unironically.

Basically, my bum muscles forgot who they are and what they stand for. They had one job.

Like a soap opera plot twist, they’re acting like they’ve been hit over the head and have woken up in a hospital, confused and listless—a tush with a forgotten identity and nary a clue. These glutes were made for walking, but they currently prefer lazing around, making other muscles pick up the slack.

My real-life daytime drama is amnesia of the bum.

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