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Strength and Flexibility in the Groin and Hips

Afiya Zia

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I have been trying to develop strength in the groin and hips for lower-body based sports, as strength and flexibility is lacking in these areas. Currently what I'm doing looks like this:

Hip extensions: 2*10s forward, sideways, back, forwards with circles in both directions.

ATG Squats

Butterfly stretch and Middle Split as wide as I can go

Hip flexor stretch

I don't think strengthening of the groin is prevalent here, as it seems to take a back seat to flexibility, but I don't know what I could do to strengthen it. Any ideas?

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Connor Davies

Obviously pistols and natural leg curls will strengthen your quads and hamstrings, but high rep squats with a slow tempo are good for training the smaller muscles around the hips.  Focus on pressing the knees apart.  Arch holds and hyperextensions are also good for training the hips and lower back.


I'm not really sure of good bodyweight exercises for the hip abductors and adductors.


A good stretch for the outside of your legs is the "lord of the fishes."  Weird name, I know.


What stretches do you use for your hip flexors?

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David McManamon

Just apply basic gymnastics based strength principles including static holds or PNF as people call it when you do a static hold in a stretched position.

Contract against the ground in your middle split, slowly slide to your maximum then slowly press back out (possibly with assistance).  

Also make sure your hip stretches involve circular transitions from one position to another, very slowly at first since your joint should send unusual pain signals to your brain.

Consider this attractive routine involving some squats with movement:


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Keilani Gutierrez

yeah, slowly introducing sei ping ma, gong bu, xie bu, pu bu will have your hips and groin could be a nice way to go about it, being you can use them as loaded stretches. just be sure that you're not making the positions easier than they should be. if you start high, start high. as your mobility gets better, the positions will naturally "sink" but this will be something you have to discipline yourself over because its very easy to cheat during stances. 


Xie Bu and Ma Bu are my weak points, as soon as i used PPT to align my posture. had to take a higher horse stance and it's been sinking back to where i had it after getting comfortable in the position, it still gives me hip cramps. 


one i like to do from time to time is laying supine and doing a PPT and just straddling open. get some major hip muscle engagement, loosens me up for hip flexor stuff, prone leg lifts with hips open touching the ground( I would leave this to the realm of RLL)

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 Side to side lunges. We did a gagillion of these in karate years back but never weighted. Sumo do them as well. By look and feel, they focus a lot on the Posterior Chain like a wide stance PL squat. Maybe they strengthen the inner leg muscles. No idea.

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