I didn’t want to use the word stretching for fear of getting a whack full of messages talking about how stretching is bullshit. Here is just a quick post of 3 mobilizations I may do for the adductors beyond some of the more “classic” stretches.
I believe the adductors are an under addressed area in dysfunction. Everyone loves talking about glutes, hip flexors, posterior hip capsule, Psoas etc. However, the adductors are a big player in imbalances through the hip and this is easy to point out in the classic valgus pattern. Adductors are going to be a huge driving force for this or will at least be forced to be involved if something else is driving the valgus. Also, for people that really struggle to get hip external rotation on one side no matter how much pigeon pose/glute stretch they do, these mobilizations can be great for gaining mobility through the anterior/medial portion of the hip which can be highly underrated for address mobility issues.
1. Hip flexor 45-60 degree angle
I love this “stretch” (gasp, I said it) because it can be a great way to mobilize the anterior hip outside the pure sagittal plane. This will focus on muscles like pectineus, adductor brevis, adductor longus which all can be great contributors to hip dysfunction. I find this really effective to make it an active mobility exercise by doing glute contractions for 5-10 seconds for 3-5 reps between holds.
2. Hip Flexor with external rotation of hip
Similar to the above stretch, except this time you want to externally rotate your downward hip. What will happen likely is your entire pelvis will want to come with you. This is your body lacking the ability have hip external rotation in neutral from the pelvis. So line that pelvis up as best you can, squeeze the glute and feel the anterior hip let go of a lot of tension with similar reps as above.
3. Hockey Goalie stretch/Frog stretch with lean to one side
I love classic hockey goalie/frog stretch, but have recently been playing around with leaning towards one side and really leveraging the OPPOSITE leg. So if you lean to the left focus on trying to gain as much hip abduction as possible, squeeze the glute and really focussing on opening up the hip. Do both sides and do in between a more neutral/regular mobilization. Keep Neutral-ish spine as best as you can.
Thank you Ryan Kerr from RK4 Development for being the model for my photos. No need to call in a professional like Liam Howe! Ryan, is doing great work with lots of youth hockey players on the North Shore so definitely be sure to check out his instagram for future postings.
Let me know what you guys think! Have a good day!