Groin and Inner Thigh Muscle Stretches

Groin and Inner Thigh Muscle Stretches

Inner Thighs Deserve Flexibility
Inner Thighs Deserve Flexibility. Sciencepic

The adductor muscle group, more commonly referred to as the "groin" is  a set of 5 muscles that bring your leg in towards the center of your body, or conversely take your hip out to the side.  With most of the adductors, one end of the muscle is attached to the pubic bone, with the other end attaching on or near the thigh bone (called the "femur.")  The two exceptions are:

  • The hamstring part of the adductor Magnus starts at the sitting bone (also called the ischial tuberosity.)
  • The gracilis muscle attaches onto the inner surface of the top of your tibia (lower leg) bone.

Related:  About Your Inner Thigh Muscles

Considered to be "inner thigh" muscles, the adductors work in opposition to the abductors which are located on the outside of the hip.  Together these two muscle groups play a big role in pelvic positioning, which in turn can affect the alignment of your spine.  

Because of this, one way to positively influence the flexibility of your low back is to release both inner and outer thigh muscles.

Seated Inner Thigh Stretch

Easy inner thigh stretch.
Easy inner thigh stretch. Ameliafox

The most obvious and commonly used method for releasing tight inner thigh muscles is to stretch, of course.  Here is a beginner move that may help open your hips and stretch your adductors:

Sit on the floor, or if need be your bed (though the floor is better because it is a harder surface, which may help you avoid excess muscle contraction.)  

Place the soles of your feet together and let your knees drop out to the side.  (When you first start you may find your knees don't go down very far.  That's okay - work with what you have.)  Stay in this position for about 5 seconds and then extend your legs out straight to give your adductors a break.  Repeat between 3 to 5 times.

More Stretches:  Quads

Seated Adductor Stretch

Basic inner thigh groin stretch.
Basic inner thigh groin stretch. rognar

Another common adductor or inner thigh stretch is also done in a seated position.  

This time, extend your legs out to the side, making as wide a "V" shape as you comfortably can.  Don't worry if they don't go out very far.  The key here is to work in a safe zone that gives you some stretch challenge but where you're not overdoing it.   In other words, don't go to the point where you feel strain or pulling on your back, sacroiliac or hip.  You'll improve and get more range if you practice this regularly, so it's okay to take it easy at first.

For some people, simply sitting like this is enough to produce an inner thigh stretch.  

But if you need more stretch, keeping your back straight, lean towards the floor from your hip joints.   Again, go only as far as you can without pain or discomfort.  Stay there for about 5-10 seconds; remember to breathe!  

Keep your back straight when you come up and if you need, use your hands to push against the floor for leverage.

Groin Muscle Flexibility - Be Strategic

Strengthen outer thighs to release groin.
Strengthen outer thighs to release groin. lisafx

It can pay to be strategic when going for inner thigh flexibility.  Along with the stretches on the previous two pages, consider strengthening the opposing muscle group, the abductors.

Strong abductors help support and carry the weight of your pelvis and spine, which in turn may relieve the inner thighs from some of this responsibility.  One basic abductor strengthener is to lie on your side, prop yourself up onto your forearm and lift and lower your top leg up slowly.  Repeat about 10-15 times for one or two sets.  You can do this every other day.

Try:  Strategic Outer Hip Muscle Release

Inner Thigh Flexibility Tips

Choose activities that elongate your groin muscles.
Choose activities that elongate your groin muscles. vfoto

Another inner thigh flexibility strategy is to choose activities in which you use your body, particularly your lower extremities, in lengthening ways.  For example, the martial artist shown above is likely getting an excellent stretch in his adductors while at the same time contracting and using these muscles.  This may be because his lower extremity is extending out while he is bearing weight on it.

Similar activities include yoga, Pilates, dance, tai chi, other types of martial arts.