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Iliopsoas: Strengthen and Stretch

Iliopsoas: Strengthen and Stretch: The psoas muscle is a large, solid, and powerful muscle that intervenes in the tone of posture, is very involved in many sports and daily gestures, and has a markedly tonic character.

It is a deep muscle with two origins, iliac psoas in the inner superfood of the ilium (hip bone), and psoas major in vertebral bodies, the last dorsal and all the lumbar, the fibers of both portions are direct down wards until they insert into a powerful tendon in the lesser trochanter of the femur. This anatomical arrangement allows you to raise the leg by pulling on the last vertebrae; for this reason, it tends to cause excessive  lordosis.

Also read: What is Muscle Cramps: Symptoms, Causes, Amateur Treatment


  • It simply intervenes in walking and running by pushing the leg forward, but its authentic action occurs when we raise the knee or strike with a kick.
  • Highly requested for climbing slopes in trekking, mountain skiing, and kicking the ball in soccer.


  • Due to its excessive tonic character and muscular involvement, it usually appears shortened.
  • More than enhancing it, its treatment, both in the world of sports and in everyday life, focuses on achieving adequate joint mobility with acceptable levels of flexibility in this powerful muscle, thus avoiding lumbar overloads.
  • If you work, it is usually integrated into the anterior muscle chain, along with the abdominals, quadriceps, pectorals, etc., in throwing or hitting gestures.


Exercise 1

Leg elevation: any movement of raising the legs from lying down, the psoas is the protagonist of the action, the abdominal muscles only act as stabilizers of the spine. In the exercise of “the hundred,” the psoas is responsible for positioning and keeping the legs vertically.

Exercise 2

Throwing the ball: when we put the anterior muscle chain into action to perform throws, the hip flexors are the most responsible for the flexion gesture to give power to the upper body. 

Exercise 3

Full curl up in the classic “abdominal” exercises raising the trunk; it is the psoas responsible for raising the box. The abdominals only flex the spine, but the final gesture is the responsibility of the psoas.


Exercise 1

Hip retroversion: place one leg in retroversion with the knee bent and the other leg resting on the bench. Perform the hip retroversion gesture, trying to keep the lumbar area in contact with the court.

Exercise 2

Semi “split”: on your knees, with one leg well behind, prevent the lumbar area from arching excessively; for this, it is necessary to contract the abdomen.

Exercise 3

Supine knee support: lying down, hold one foot with the opposite hand while bringing the other knee towards the shoulder, helping us with the opposite hand.

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