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Why Putting Your Wallet in the Back Pocket Can Cause Hip Pain


Uncover the link between stashing your wallet in your back pocket daily and persistent hip discomfort. Explore the ergonomics and health effects of this habit, providing practical solutions for a pain-free life on the move.


For many men, a daily routine involves putting their wallet in their back pocket, almost as automatic as brushing their teeth or getting a morning coffee. However, this seemingly harmless habit can cause unexpected issues like hip pain. The reliance on wallets and their positioning isn’t just about practicality; it’s a health concern that needs consideration.


Wallet Placement and Hip Pain

The Effects on Posture and Alignment

The wallet, when placed in the back pocket and sat on for extended periods, can cause hip and pelvic misalignment. Sitting with a wallet in one back pocket elevates one side of the body, curving the spine unnaturally and leading to postural problems. This can eventually cause body alignment issues, resulting in hip pain as the hips and lower back try to compensate.

Impact on the Sciatic Nerve

When the spine misaligns, the sciatic nerve, causing pain from the lower back down one leg, can get compressed or irritated. This can result in piriformis syndrome, where the sciatic nerve is aggravated by the piriformis muscle, leading to a deep ache in the hip joint.

Potential Muscle Strain

The constant pressure from sitting on your wallet can cause the muscles around the hip and pelvis to be in a state of compression, which is not their natural state. The ill effects aren’t just short-term; this ongoing pressure can create long-term tension and possible strain in these muscles.


Alternatives and Solutions

Front Pocket Wallets

Transferring your wallet to the front pocket not only mitigates the risk to your hip but also makes it more difficult for pickpockets to access your valuables. It’s a win-win situation for comfort and security.

Minimalist Wallet Options

Consider downsizing your wallet with a minimalist model that keeps only the essentials. Skimming down the extra cards and receipts will maintain a slimmer profile, further reducing the risk of misalignment and nerve compression.

Carrying Essentials Differently

Instead of favoring one pocket, distribute the load across multiple pockets or invest in a small bag or a phone wallet case. These alternatives ensure that you have what you need, without compromising your comfort or health.


Addressing Common Myths

Debunking Misconceptions About Back Pocket Wallet Placement

There’s a common belief that only standing on the wallet or having it filled to bulging is problematic, but research and anecdotal evidence from physical therapists suggest that even a flat, empty wallet can cause issues over time due to the consistent pressure it exerts on the nerves and muscles.


Advice From Physical Therapists

Insights on Wallet Placement and Hip Health

Physical therapists weigh in on the effects of back pocket wallet placement, recommending against it due to the various ways it can lead to discomfort and pain. They often suggest that clients switch to front-pocket wallets or alternates like money clips for a healthier backside.

Tips for Preventing Hip Pain

Physical therapists and orthopedic specialists have a wealth of experience in helping clients combat hip pain. They recommend a mix of ergonomic adjustments, stretching exercises, and lifestyle changes to prevent and alleviate pain. Along with changing wallet habits, these experts suggest regular breaks from prolonged sitting, movement-based activities such as walking or yoga, and building core strength to support the back.



Identifying a daily habit that may lead to prolonged discomfort is a crucial step in managing your well-being. By tweaking your routine slightly, you can take a significant stride towards averting hip pain and enhancing your overall health. Whether it involves changing your wallet style or committing to regular stretches, small adjustments can yield substantial benefits. Mindful habits accumulate over time, paving the way for a life with fewer physical burdens and more flexibility and comfort. Prioritizing your hip health equates to investing in your future mobility and quality of life.

Shamaine Physiophyx PT

Dr. Sharmaine Longsworth

DPT, CIDN, Owner and Founder of Physiophyx PT

"We Help People Get Rid of Pain & Injuries and Return to an Active Lifestyle Without Pain Meds, Injections, or Surgery."
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