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5 Exercises To Fix Tight Adductors

by Ben Thompson

The adductor group is located on the inside of the leg and consists of the pectineus, adductor brevis, adductor longus, adductor magnus and gracillis (See Figure 1).

The function of the adductors is to adduct the femur toward the midline, but they also assist hip flexion and extension.

Many groin injuries develop because of poor tissue quality in this area. What tends to occur is the adductors become fibrotic and develop adhesions because they are weak or overworked. A length tension assessment will be able to determine if you need soft tissue treatment in this area.

If this region is restricted, the injury risk is much higher and the antagonists, like the glute medius, are unable to fire correctly.

Figure 1: Adductor Group

If your adductors are restricted, it is difficult to externally rotate at the the hip meaning you produce less torque and do not recruit the correct muscles. This has a negative effect on total force produced.

Another reason why it is important to address this area is because tight adductors can contribute to an anterior tilt. Check out our recent post "Stop Stretching Your Hamstrings" and read more about anterior pelvic tilt and ways to correct it.

This, combined with tight hip flexors leads to lordosis of the lumbar spine, which has a negative impact on posture.

Below are some of the exercises we use to target the adductors.

1. Half Kneeling Adductor Mobilisation

Slowly rock back to increase the stretch on the adductors and forward to ease off.

  • 3 sets of 2 minutes each side.

2. Spiderman + Adductor Stretch

This mobility drill is great for opening up the hips. This is great for stretching the hip flexors on the rear leg and adductors on the front.

  • 3 sets of 8 reps each side.

3. Foam Roll Adductors

Lying prone on the floor and turn your toe out to expose the adductors.

  • 3 sets of 2 minutes each side.

4. Foam Roll Adductors on Box

Place a foam roller on a box, then roll the adductors keeping the toe pointed out.

  • 3 sets of 2 minutes each side.

5. Adductor SMR with Barbell

Place a weight plate on one end of the bar and use the weight to perform a self myofacial release on the adductors.

  • 3 sets of 2 minutes each side.


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