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Thigh Muscle Stretches

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Updated September 01, 2009

The thigh describes the area of the leg above the knee joint and below the hip. Four large muscle groups make up the thigh region:

The Quadriceps - Straighten the knee and bend the hip up
The Hamstrings - Bend the knee and extend the hip backward
The Adductors - Bring the legs together
The Abductors - Move the legs apart

The muscles of the thigh become tight due to the extended amount of time we spend in the seated position during the work day. For this reason it is important to stretch the thigh muscles frequently.

Let's review 3 easy stretches that target the quadriceps, hamstring, and adductor muscle groups.

1. Quadriceps Stretch

Courtesy of Getty Images
1) Stand upright
2) Step forward with your right leg
3) Slowly bend your right knee keeping your left leg straight
4) Continue to bend your right knee until a gentle stretch is felt on top of the thigh
5) Hold for 5 seconds
6) Return to the start position
7) Repeat steps 1 - 6 five more times 8) Perform with left leg forward

2. Hamstring Stretch

Courtesy of Getty Images
1) Stand upright
2) Bend over and attempt to touch your toes while keeping your knees straight
3) Continue until a gentle stretch is felt behind the knees
4) Hold for 5 seconds
5) Return to the start position
6) Repeat steps 1 - 5 five more times

3. Adductor Stretch

Courtesy of Getty Images
1) Stand upright
2) Spread your legs shoulder distance apart
3) Slowly lean to your right while bending your right knee
4) Keep your left leg straight
5) Continue until a gentle stretch is felt in your inner left thigh
6) Hold for 5 seconds
7) Return to the start position
8) Repeat steps 1 - 6 five more times
9) Perform this time leaning to the left
Related Video
Stretches to Prevent Hip and Pain and Injury
Stretches to Reduce and Prevent Neck Pain
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