5 Body Parts You Didn't Know You Had

Sit Bones, Sacrum, Psoas, Piriformis, and Intercostals

Do you know your piriformis from your psoas? If you do, you are probably really into yoga, because yoga introduces you to body parts you never knew you had. And once you know about them, you better believe you are going to stretch them out. 

The Sit Bones

The pelvis; the ischial tuberosity is the thick part of the ischium. Stocktrek Images/Getty Images

You may hear them called sits bones or sitting bones, but chances are you never heard of them at all until your yoga teacher told you to sit on them. Anatomically part of your pelvis (the ischial tuberosity, to be exact), the sit bones are quite literally the bones under the flesh of the butt that you sit on.

The Sacrum

The Sacrum. Courtesy ADAM

Did you know there is a triangular bone at the base of your spine, right above your tailbone? Well, that's the sacrum and it comes up a lot in poses where you are lying on your back. Ok, actually, it should usually stay down in poses where you are lying on your back.

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The Psoas

The Psoas Major Muscle
The Psoas Major Muscle. SCIEPRO / Getty Images

The psoas major is one of the group of muscles called hip flexors, because together they work to bring your leg and torso toward one another into a position of flexion. The psoas inserts in the upper interior of your femur, or thigh bone, at one end, then passes through the pelvis and connects to several of the lower vertebra as it fans out at the other end.

Since the psoas is not a surface muscle, it can be difficult to identify and isolate, but its anonymity does not decrease its importance. Indeed, the psoas is key to the cultivation of core strength and hip flexibility and is particularly important in balancing, forward bending, and back bending.

Strengthening and lengthening the psoas is key for anyone suffering from back pain due to sitting too much, so check out these poses for the psoas if you are a desk jockey.

The Piriformis

The Piriformis Muscle
Running right behind the psoas (figuratively, and somewhat literally) for the title of least famous muscle is the piriformis. Stretching this little muscle in your butt can have a big impact if you suffer from sciatica.

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The Intercostals

External intercostal muscles
The Intercostal Muscles. MedicalRF.com / Getty Images

Ever feel sore around your ribs after a lot of back bending or twisting? That's your intercostals talking. These muscles are also responsible for the expansion and contraction of your rib cage when you breath.

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