Top 10 Muscle Imbalances And What To Do About Them #10

#10 Hip Adductors Dominating Rectus Abdominis

It’s the end of a thrilling ride. I want to thank you for coming on this ‘Top 10’ journey with me. Hopefully you had as much fun reading them as I did writing them. Always an honor to share my passion for movement and ways to understand your body. My wish is that you have taken a few things from the series that have helped yourself and others.

Truly grateful for all the shares and likes. Thank you for sharing the mojo. #sharethemojo


Now let’s strap in and Rock N’ Roll for the last one. Locked and loaded.

And away we go…

Ever wonder why your inner thighs always hurt? Don’t we all? They are usually tight as bowstrings and get the most horrific knots. When someone strips down your groin (not the good way) and launches into soft tissue release of the adductor complex you want to curl up into a ball, suck your thumb and call for your mommy. Yep it’s that bad. 🙂


Your inner thighs are busy beavers. They are part of the Deep Longitudinal Line of fascial stability and the Anterior Oblique Subsystem of movement. Both systems are critical to movement stability and transfer of forces. When I assess the adductors they are often in shambles. That’s a technical term for ‘dysfunction.’

Deep Core Line Thomas Myers Courtesy of Rocktape

What are the adductors?

Adductor brevis
Adductor longus
Adductor Magnus
Lower fibers of the glute Max

Special note:

The adductor longus/brevis, pectineus, and distal portion of the adductor magnus also flex the hip. So they are especially prone to overuse. When they work too much, they get upset. Wouldn’t you? And when they get upset they light up the Bat Signal…PAIN

Try this little test:

Sit in a chair or stand. Take a pillow and slowly squeeze it between your knees. What did you feel in your abdominal region? Did it tighten up? It should have. If it didn’t then you are really disconnected. 🙂 Do it again and pay close attention. Don’t forget to breathe. Remember to go slow. When you go fast you lose body awareness. Speed hides need!

The hip adductors and the abdominals are bookends of stabilization. If you have weak/inhibited abdominals your go-to strategy will be using adductors for central zone stability. Your inner thigh becomes your Core. Of course they are gonna hurt, they never take a break. One of the big no no’s when I see people doing abdominal work is squeezing a ball between the knees. Why on Earth would you do that? Don’t drive movement from the adductors. Use your abs sparky.

Symptoms you may experience:

  • Groin pulls
  • Knee pain
  • Hip pain
  • Lower back pain
  • Pelvic pain
  • Cramping and spasm

What to do about it?

Release the adductors with a foam roller

The abdominals come alive during anti extension movements and they tilt your pelvis backwards. Do the following movement. It looks easy but it’s gonna be tough. And remember…SLOW.

Lie on your back. Bend your knees and put your feet flat. Flatten your lower back against the floor and keep it there while you raise your arms up over your head. Don’t let the pelvis tilt anterior when you raise the arms. Don’t hold your breath. Take 4 seconds to raise arms and 4 seconds to lower. Repeat 4 times.

Next up…

Oops! Sorry habit. That’s it. Until I start another series. Any suggestions???

Stay Strong