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Robert J. Delmore, Kevin G. Laudner and Michael R. Torry

Context:

Hip-adductor strains are among the most common lower-extremity injuries sustained in athletics. Treatment of these injuries involves a variety of exercises used to target the hip adductors.

Objective:

To identify the varying activation levels of the adductor longus during common hip-adductor exercises.

Design:

Descriptive study.

Setting:

Laboratory.

Participants:

24 physically active, college-age students.

Intervention:

None.

Main Measurement Outcomes:

Peak and average electromyographic (EMG) activity of the adductor longus muscle during the following 6 hip-adductor rehabilitation exercises: side-lying hip adduction, ball squeezes, rotational squats, sumo squats, standing hip adduction on a Swiss ball, and side lunges.

Results:

The side-lying hip-adduction exercise produced more peak and average activation than any other exercise (P < .001). Ball squeezes produced more peak and average activation than rotational squats, sumo squats, and standing adduction on a Swiss ball (P < .001). Ball squeezes had more average activation than side lunges (P = .001). All other variables for peak activation during the exercises were not statistically significant (P > .08). These results allowed the authors to provide an overall ranking system (highest to lowest muscle activation): side-lying hip adduction, ball squeezes, side lunges, standing adduction on a Swiss ball, rotational squats, and sumo squats.

Conclusion:

The study provides a ranking system on the activation levels of the adductor longus muscle for 6 common hip-adductor rehabilitation exercises, with the side-lying hip-adduction and ball-squeeze exercises displaying the highest overall activation.