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Gemellus superior



  • Deep


  • External surface of spina ischii
  • External surface of obturator membrane


  • Trochanter major femur
    • Medial surface

Main function

  • Hip
    • Lateral rotation

Secondary function

  • Hip
    • Abduction
  • Pelvis
    • Contralateral rotation

Nerve innervation

  • Segmental
    • L5-S2
  • Peripheral
    • Plexus sacralis

Arterial supply

  • Inferior gluteal artery


  • Patient position
    • Prone
  • The superior gemellus muscle is deep and is difficult to palpate
    • You can palpate the deep lateral rotator group, of which the superior gemellus is a part of, but it is difficult to seperate the superior gemellus
  • Place your hand just lateral to the sacrum, halfway between the SIPS (spina iliaca posterior superior) and the apex of the sacrum
  • Ask the patient to bend the knee to 90°
  • Give resistance towards medial rotation, so that the patient is giving force towards lateral rotation
    • Feel for the contraction of the lateral rotators
  • NB! The lateral rotator group of the hip also consists of: quadratus femoris, obturator internus, obturator externus, piriformis and gemellus inferior
    • It can be difficult to seperate between these muscles, but be aware that they all will be active during the movement
    • Also the gluteus maximus is activated during this movement. If you perform too much pressure, it too will be activated

Strength test

  • Patient position
    • Sitting with 90° flexion of the knee with the leg hanging freely above the floor
  • Place your one hand lateral on the patient's thigh on the side that is to be tested
  • Use your opposite hand to give resistance to the patient
    • Place the hand along the medial aspect of the calf and place the leg in a internal rotated position of the hip, so that the patient is giving force towards external rotation
  • Note that this test also tests the quadratus femoris, obturator internus, obturator externus and gemellus inferior that are all lateral rotators of the hip