We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.

Advertiser Disclosure

Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

How We Make Money

We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently from our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What are the Hip Flexors?

By P.M. Willers
Updated Mar 03, 2024
Our promise to you
The Health Board is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At The Health Board, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

Hip flexors are a group of muscles surrounding the hip that provide leg stability and hip flexion. They comprise a major muscle group and are highly important to movement. Hip flexors are one of the most underdeveloped groups of muscles. Exercises in strength training frequently ignore or avoid this particular muscle group.

The primary muscles of the group are the iliacus and psoas major. Together, these muscles make up the iliopsoas. The rectus femoris is also included within the group, although it is also considered a quadricep muscle. These muscles are frequently overlooked and misunderstood, but there are few ways that these muscles can be strengthened using basic free weights.

A lack of training exercises is the most common problem besides the lack of attention towards the group. Hanging leg raises or inclined sit-ups have traditionally been used to exercise the hip flexors, but these exercises use only the participant’s body weight. Besides using ankle weights, there are few ways to increase the effectiveness of these simple exercises.

These muscles do not display the obvious outward physical changes and improvements of other muscles groups, but strength is vitally important for speed and quickness of movement. Sprinting speed can be positively affected by strong hip flexors. High knee lifts are improved by strong flexors and are associated with both improved stride length and speed. Strength of the group is also invaluable in sports or activities that require kicking a ball.

The muscle group can be a valuable asset within tackle or contact sports when an athlete run against or with the weight of another player. They are also an asset in activities such as rowing, cycling, and climbing. Hip flexors also control pelvic carriage and affect posture.

Beyond the benefits of strength, weak hip flexors can cause accident or injury. A disparity between the muscle strength of the hip flexors and gluteus muscles or quadriceps can cause increasesd susceptibility to hamstring injuries. A person with weak flexors is marked by a tendency to shuffle rather than run or move with high and rapid knee movement.

There are now many machines and apparatus that aim to strengthen the muscle group. Machines and tools attempt to use unique angles and rollers to strengthen knee and hip flexors, but there are still problems. The hip joint is not set, so it can be difficult for users to maintain proper form, which can cause strain or injury and render the exercise virtually ineffective.

The Health Board is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.

Discussion Comments

By parmnparsley — On Oct 20, 2011

@Comparables- You should try doing roman chair sit-ups. These allow you to hyper-extend your body beyond 180 degrees and really give your hip flexor muscles a stretch. I warn you though, start off easy so you do not injure yourself. Once you get a feel for the exercise, and get good control of your movements, you can start adding weight and messing with your timing.

I like to hold a 20 kilo plate on my chest and explode up as fast as I can, then slowly lower my body back to the starting position over two seconds. I have found this technique really adds to speed, power, and shiftyness for lack of a better word.

By Glasshouse — On Oct 19, 2011

@comparables- Some of my favorite hip flexor workouts are decline sit ups with medicine balls, and hanging leg raises with ankle weights. I would credit these two workouts with helping make me an explosive player. I play DE, but having strong hip flexors is important if I want to get an advantage coming around the edge.

You will need a partner or a sturdy wall for the decline workout. I prefer having a partner, so you can add side throws and twists to make the workout more dynamic. Twisting on the decline sit up will do more to strengthen your hip flexors than just going straight up and down. You can also do decline sit ups with a plate crossed over your chest if you can't find a medicine ball.

The leg raises really make you work if you add a little weight. I stand a dumbbell up on its end and pick it up with my feet. I hang from the pull up rack, lifting my legs as high up to my chest as possible. You can use weighted ankle straps, but I prefer using the weight because it makes me really work to not drop the dumbbell.

By Comparables — On Oct 18, 2011

Are there any hip flexor exercises that I can do with free weights or weight machines? I want something that will really strengthen my hip flexors so I can run with more power. I am already fairly quick, but I want something that will allow me to hit a hole and blast right through it. I am going to try out for varsity football next year, and I need to do some fine tuning. I would appreciate any pointers.

By live2shop — On Oct 18, 2011

My brother had a hip flexor injury a few years ago. He was playing tennis and made a very quick change of direction. He was irritated with himself because he hadn't done enough warm-up exercises. Also, he found out later that it is important to keep your abdominal muscles strong to stabilize the hips.

Anyway, he had to rest and it was painful to walk for a while, but he did recover.

By sweetPeas — On Oct 17, 2011

I never really thought about it much, but I guess we don't think about our hip flexors very often. I can't think of many exercises that hit that area. Maybe some of the yoga movements exercise that area. I can see that they are important for certain sports.

I used to do gymnastics and I would think you would need to use those muscles a lot for that. The hip joint and the muscles around it are kind of loosy goosy, so if you aren't in great shape, you should be careful.

The Health Board, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

The Health Board, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.