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Biomechanical benefits of symmetrical strengthening of hip extensors among athletes: A review

Y Paul
M Swanepoel
TJ Ellapen
RW Muller
J Williams


There is abundant literature encouraging athletes to engage in concurrent strength training. However, little emphasis is placed on the value of biomechanics with regard to symmetrical strengthening of force-couple relationships. A review of literature reveals 565 biomechanical papers versus 2085 physiological papers pertaining to concurrent strengthening and athletic practice. This review evaluates the impact of asymmetrically stronger hip flexors (HFlex) and weaker hip extensors (HExt), specifically related to sprint and high- and long- jump athletes. The functional biomechanical implications of these asymmetrical force-couple relationships precipitate sport injuries at the hip and knee joints are also presented. The precipitated common sport injuries identified include short-arc pelvis-on-femur hip flexion, short-arc pelvis-on-femur hip adduction and at the knee; patellofemoral pain syndrome (PFPS), jumper’s knee, and genu recurvatum.

Keywords: Hip flexors, hip extensors and asymmetry, biomechanics.

Journal Identifiers

print ISSN: 2411-6939