A little bit of anatomy today. We will be looking at what muscles actually flex the hip and you may be surprised at how many there actually are. The body is very complex. Firstly, hip flexion is when the knee is moving up and/ or forward and the angle between the front of the femur and the pelvis is decreasing. There are five main muscles that fall into this group.
Illiopsoas: This is actually two separate muscles that we all know well as the hip flexors. Check out this post on tight hips to find out more about the problem that a tight psoas can cause. The psoas starts in the lower back and attaches to the femur, which is the thigh bone. The illiacus, the other muscle in this group attaches to the hip and the femur.
Rectus Femoris: Another big hip flexor, this is a long thin muscle that runs from the hip and attaches onto your shin bone, the tibia. It turns into the patellar tendon and is also part of the quadriceps group. Not only does it flex the hip it also extends the knee.
Tensor Fascia Latae: Otherwise known as the TFL and a little trouble maker, remember to get your tennis ball in there as it gets pretty tight. It is on the outside of the thigh, and starts at the pelvis and actually attaches to your tibia, which is a bone in your shin. It also works to abduct the thigh, and extends into the ITB, the illiotibial band, which if you do a quick search for you will find causes a lot of knee problems and gets tight easily. It is mostly made from fascia.
Sartorius: This is actually the longest muscle in your body and runs diagonally along the length of your thigh. Starting at the hip and attaches at your shin, it flexes the hip, abducts your leg, and rotate your thigh.
Pectineus: This muscle is very small and goes from the pubic bone to your femur. It is also an adductor of the thigh.