The gluteus medius (GM) is thought to play an important role in stabilizing the pelvis and controlling femoral adduction and internal rotation during functional activity. GM weakness, resulting in decreased stabilization and control, has been suggested to be related to lower extremity dysfunction and injury. Many clinicians focus on strengthening the GM to improve lower extremity kinematics for the prevention and rehabilitation of injury. An indirect way to measure GM strength is through electromyography. It is generally assumed that exercises producing higher levels of activation will result in greater strengthening effects.3 Understanding what exercises result in the greatest level of GM activation will assist clinicians in their injury prevention and rehabilitation efforts.
Focused Clinical Question:
In a healthy adult population, what lower extremity exercises produce the greatest mean GM activation, expressed as a percentage of maximum voluntary isometric contraction?
Hamstra-Wright is with the Dept of Kinesiology and Nutrition, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL. Huxel Bliven is with the Dept of Interdisciplinary Health Sciences, A.T. Still University, Mesa, AZ.