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Gluteus maximus



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


  • Superficial


  • Crista iliaca
    • Posterior part
  • Sacrum
    • Posterolateral aspect
  • Os coccyx
  • Sacrotuberos ligament
  • Fascia over gluteus medius


  • Iliotibialband
  • Tuberositas glutea femur

Main function

  • Hip
    • Extension
    • Abduction
    • Lateral rotation
    • Adduction
  • Pelvis
    • Posterior tilt

Secondary function

  • Pelvis
    • Contralateral rotation
  • Knee
    • Extension (via iliotibialband)

Nerve innervation

  • Segmental
    • L5-S2
  • Peripheral
    • Inferior gluteal nerve

Arterial supply

  • Superior gluteal artery
  • Inferior gluteal artery


  • Patient position
    • Prone
  • Place your hand just lateral to sacrum
  • Palpate the muscle from it's medial limitation (from sacrum) towards it's lateral limitation (towards the iliotibial band)
  • To further distinguish the gluteus maximus, ask the patient to lift the leg into extension of the hip

Strength test

  • Patient position
    • Prone
  • Position the patient so that she/he has the knee flexed to 90° or more
  • Fixate the back on the ipsilatearl side which is being tested
  • Give resistance towards the posterior and distal part of femur in the direction of flexion so that the patient is giving force towards extension of the hip