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SPORTS ANATOMY LESSON #10

Lateral Rotators of the Hips
 
The lateral rotator of the hips muscles is a group of nine muscles located in pelvic region on both sides of the body.  Their names are: 1) Gluteus Maximus, 2) Gluteus Medius, 3) Gluteus Minimus, 4) Pyriformis, 5) Superior Gemellus, 6) Inferior Gemellus, 7) Obturator Internus, 8) Obturator Externus, and 9) Quadratus Femoris.  These muscles are shown in Figure 1 below:  

Rotators of hips muscles

Figure 1. The Lateral Rotators of the Hips.


INNERVATION (NERVE SUPPLY)

The nerve supply to the lateral rotators of the hips is as follows:  The Gluteus Maximus is supplied by the inferior gluteal nerve (L5, S1, S2) and branches from the sacral plexus.  The Gluteus Medius and Gluteus Minimus are supplied by the superior gluteal nerve (L4, L4, S1).  The Piriformis is supplied by the piriformis nerve (L5, S1, S2).  The Quadratus Femoris is supplied by the quadratus femoris branch of the nerve to the quadratus femoris and inferior gemellus (L5, S1).  The Superior Gemellus is supplied by the nerve to the obturator internus and superior gemellus – a branch of the sacral plexus (L5, S1).  The Inferior Gemellus is supplied by the nerve to the obturator internus and inferior gemellus – a branch of the sacral plexus (L5, S1).   The Obturator Internus is supplied by the nerve to the obturator internus and superior gemellus – a branch of the sacral plexus (L5, S1).  The Obturator Externus is supplied by the posterior division of the obturator nerve.  See Table 1 and Figure 2 below:

Table 1. Lateral rotators of the hips and their nerve supply.

 

 

 

MUSCLE

 

NERVE SUPPLY

 

 

Gluteus Maximus

 

Inferior gluteal nerve (L5, S1, S2) & branches from sacral plexus

 

Gluteus Medius

 

Superior (L4, L5, S1) gluteal nerve

 

Gluteus Minimus

 

Superior (L4, L5, S1) gluteal nerve

 

Pyriformis

 

Piriformis nerve (L5, S1, S2)

 

Superior Gemellus

Nerve to the obturator internus and superior gemellus –

a branch of the sacral plexus (L5, S1)

 

Inferior Gemellus

Nerve to the obturator internus and inferior gemellus –

 a branch of the sacral plexus (L5, S1)

 

Obturator Internus

Nerve to the obturator internus and superior gemellus –

a branch of the sacral plexus (L5, S1) 

 

Obturator Externus

 

Posterior division of the obturator nerve 

 

Quadratus Femoris

Quadratus femoris branch of the nerve to the quadratus femoris and

 inferior gemellus (L5, S1)

 

 

Hip Rotators Nerves


Figure 2.  Lumbosacral plexus.  Anterior view.

"LifeART (and/or) MediClip image copyright (2005) Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. All rights reserved."


Function

The lateral rotators of the hips main function is to rotate your hips from side to side.  This occurs during movements such as swinging a baseball bat, swinging a golf club, swinging a tennis racket, throwing punches while boxing and throwing a shot put and discus.  See Figure 3 below:

Hip rotators muscles and the baseball swing


Figure 3.  Swinging a baseball bat for a right hand player involves lateral rotation
of the hips from left to right.
  Muscles involved:  L-gluteus maximus, L-gluteus medius, L-quadratus femoris, L-pyriformis,
L-superior gemellus, L-inferior gemellus, L-obturator internus, L-obturator externus,
and Right-gluteus minimus.


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Dr. Larry Van Such


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