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Adductor magnus




Adductor magnus - anterior view
Adductor magnus - posterior view
Adductor magnus - posterolateral view

General information

  • This section is strictly limited to anatomy, you might be looking for clinical relevant information which is found under the clinical chapters -- muscles section, click here to go to that page
  • A part of the thighs medial muscle group


  • Deep


  • Ramus inferior pubis
  • Ramus ischium
  • Tuberositas ischium


  • Medial to tuberostias glutea
  • Middle part of the linea aspera
  • Medial supracondylar ridge
  • Tuberculum adductor at the medial condyle of femur

Main function

  • Hip
    • Adduction
    • Extension
  • Pelvis
    • Posterior tilt

Secondary function

  • Pelvis
    • Elevation

Nerve innervation

  • Segmental
    • L2-L4
  • Peripheral
    • Nervus obturatorius
    • Nervus ischiadicus

Arterial supply

  • Deep part of the femoral artery
  • Obturatorius artery


  • Patient position: Prone
  • Palpate the tuberositas ischium
  • Flex the knee and ask the patient to tense the hamstrings muscles against your resistance, locate the hamstrings and identify the medial boundary of the hamstrings
  • Palpate until you feel a ditch just anteromedially for the medial part of hamstrings
  • When you locate the adductor magnus, follow it up until it's attachment at the tuberositas ischium
  • To confirm you are at the location of the adductor magnus and not the hamstrings, you can ask the patient to tense in the direction of adduction while you feel for the contraction

Strength test

  • Patient position: Side-lying. The side being tested is down towards the bench
  • Ask the patient to lie with the body straight, the side being tested is the lowest point
  • Grab the upper leg and help the patient to maintain an abducted position throughout the test
  • Ask the patient to lift the lower leg from the bench so that the lower hip is adducted
  • Meanwhile, hold the leg medial on the femur just proximal to the knee-joint to give resistance in the direction of abduction
    • The patient should be pressing against you in the direction of adduction
  • NB! Make sure the pelvis is not rotated forward or that the pelvis is tipping anteriorly
    • In forward rotation this will give more pressure towards the lower fibers of the gluteus maximus
    • In anterior tilt this will lead to compensatory activity of the hip flexors