Unlock Your Hip Flexors

Unlock Your Hip Flexors

Get Instant Access

Garudasana Foto

Internal Rotation Garudasana

Iliac Rotation

External Rotation Padmasana

Movement: Pelvis

Hip External Rotation MuscleGarudasana

Movement: Pelvis

Rotation Garudasana

GarudasanaHip Joint ForceHip Muscle IllustrationsInternal Hip Rotation MusclesPsoas Healing



Iliopsoas psoas major

Also known as the psoas muscle, the iliopsoas is actually a combination of two large muscles: the psoas major and the iliacus. The psoas major muscle originates in the lower back; theiliacus originates on theinside of the pelvis. Both muscles combine to form one tendon that attaches to the inside of the proximal femur bone.

The iliopsoas is thus called polyarticular. This means that it crosses over (and moves) more than one joint. The iliopsoas also acts like a pulley as it curves over the front rim of the pelvis on its way to the femur. Like other pulley systems, this serves to multiply the force generated when the iliopsoas contracts. The iliopsoas thus moves the bones of the lower back, pelvis and hip in a coupled fashion. This means that when it contracts, a combination of movements across several joints is possible.

Hatha yoga can be used to reawaken our consciousness of this large and important muscle. Once you awaken the iliopsoas, contract or relax it to transform and deepen your asanas.


The iliopsoas first awakens during infancy when we are learning to sit up and then to walk. Once awakened, the iliopsoas becomes constantly activein activities such as standing and walking. In spite of this constant use, our awareness of the iliopsoas quickly becomes unconscious. (Imagine if we had to think every time we took a step!)

Lesser Trochanter

Lesser trochanter (the smaller prominence or knob) of the proximal femur.

Innervation & chakra ittuminated

Lumbar nerves 1,2,3,4 Chakra: Second

2) Iliacus: Upper two thirds of the inside surface of the iliac bone up to the inner lip of the iliac crest and anterior sacroiliac joint.


1) Psoas major: Tranverse processes, discs and bodies of lumbar vertebrae one through five; body of twelfth thoracic vertebra.


Lesser trochanter (the smaller prominence or knob) of the proximal femur.

Fascia Lata Stretch

The second chakra is illuminated by contracting and lengthening the iliopsoas muscle. This is due to stimulation of the various sensory nerves at its origin and insertion, within the muscle itself, and the skin surrounding it.

Iliopsoas (il-e-o-SO-us)


Gluteus Maximus Origin And Insertion

Gluteus maximus: extends hip and trunk resulting in lengthening and stretching of the Iliopsoas, particularly in backbends.

Leg Iliopsoas

Hamstrings: extends the hip when initiating backbends, can be used to draw the opposite leg iliopsoas into a deeper stretch in lunging postures.

Psoas Muscle And Surrounding Nerves


Tensor fascia lata: assists the iliopsoas in fine-tuning hip flexion.

Sartorius: assists the iliopsoas in fine-tuning hip flexion and external rotation.

Rectus femoris: assists the iliopsoas in fine-tuning hip flexion, also assists the gluteus maximus in accentuating stretch of the iliopsoas during back-bending (by extending the knee).

Pectineus: assists the iliopsoas in fine-tuning hip flexion and provides adduction component to stabilize hip (also balances abduction action of sartorius).


Abduction Sartorius

virabhadrasana II

This illustration uses virabhadrasana II to demonstrate the tensor fascia lata, sartorius, rectus femoris, and pectineus as synergists of the psoas. Similarly, the extended back hip demonstrates how the gluteus maximus and hamstrings act as antagonists to the psoas.

virabhadrasana II


I his illust ration uses eka pada viparita dandasana to demonstrate the gluteus maximus and hamstrings stretching the psoas and the synergists ■I the psoas in the planted leg. Similarly, the flexed hip of the leg in the • lit demonstrates the tensor fascia lata, sartorius, rectus femoris and pectineus as synergists of the psoas.

Sartorius Tendonitis

eka pada viparita dandasana

Was this article helpful?

+1 0
The Chakra Checklist

The Chakra Checklist

The chakras are described as being aligned in an ascending column from the base of the back to the top of the head. New Age practices frequently associate each chakra with a particular color.

Get My Free Ebook


Post a comment