Hip Abductors: The Muscles That Stabilize Your Walk | Nose Creek Physiotherapy
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Hip Abductors: The Muscles That Stabilize Your Walk

Hip Abductors are a very important muscle as they stabilize your forward stride when you walk. The muscles contract to stabilize your pelvis on your weight bearing hip, so that the swinging leg can experience full motion. When this muscle weakens, the hips shift more side to side.  

If the shifting occurs, it puts more pressure downward on your knees, ankles and feet. It can even travel upwards to your Sacroiliac (SI) joints and to your lower back. Our bodies are a kinetic chain, so when one part weakens it puts more pressure on the joint above and below and causes premature wear and tear of the joints.

Here is a picture of your Gluteus Medius under your Gluteus Maximus (see diagram), you can see how it attaches from the top of your femur (thigh bone) up to the side of the pelvis. These muscles are your power tool, known as the Hip Abductors, for maximum stability.


We often like to start rehabilitation of the Hip Abductor muscle in a sidelying position, so that your joints are non-weight bearing and we can work the muscle.
However, we do not want to aggravate the joint. Once you can do 3 sets of 20 repetitions, then you are ready to go the the next level in standing with tubing resistance. We will show you all the resistance training methods to support you in the most effective training for your daily function.

Hip Abduction Exercise

  • Lie on your side with the legs straight
  • Lift your top leg with your toes down and leading with the heel
  • Ensure you keep the top leg back and in line with the body
  • Return to start position and repeat.


If you combine this exercise with the Clamshell exercise we talked about earlier in the month, you will be making your hips stronger and increasing your functional endurance during the day.

We are here for your rehabilitation and health improvement. We believe that functionality starts with an active and proactive approach.

If these exercises are not resolving your current symptoms, we would be happy to help you at the Nose Creek Physiotherapy clinic location in Calgary NE.

Blair Schachterle BScPT, Dip Manip PT, Dip Sport PT, FCAMPT, CGIMS
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