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Name that muscle

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 

Anybody know the name of the muscle(s) on the inside of the thigh, running from the groin to just above the knee?


I solved all my problems with my hamstrings and quads; now I'm getting cramps in this inside muscle, the night and day after skiing.


Once I know the name of it, I can search for stretches and exercises, as I did with the hamstrings and quads.

post #2 of 18

Those are your adductors. Several of them, but you're probably feeling your adductor magnus. 

post #3 of 18


post #4 of 18
Try some potasium gluconate and magnesium sulfate tablets. They're good for charley horse issues. Sounds like you're learning to steer the skis more.
post #5 of 18

One of the issues of cramping is not having your muscles hydrated enough along with the lactic acid build up from exercise.  A product that I found in the mid 90's when I was competing in the WC (not in skiing as much as I would want to claim it was) is Cytomax sport drink (powder form). 


Basically it has what Kneale is suggesting and a couple of other ingredients that help hydrate and also prevent/reduce lactic acid build up.


Push harder, push longer, recover faster.

post #6 of 18

FYI, the most recent theory says that altered neuromuscular control, not dehydration or electrolyte depletion, are what causes muscle cramps.

post #7 of 18
Thread Starter 

Thanks for all the info.


It's not that I'm learning anything new; I'm getting back into shape for doing what I was doing last winter, but didn't do from early March 2011 until Jan 8th of this year. In fact, on my first day I felt I had all my skills back, making a lot of controlled turns in all kinds of terrain.

Then I had to stop at 3:00 PM, because of muscle fatigue and the beginning of some small cramps.


You know how you feel a cramp begin in a muscle, but if you move the right way, you can prevent it? Like putting out a spark before it ignites a fire.

Needless to say, stopping and doing strange things with my legs, bending over, straightening, shaking one at a time, etc was NOT what I wanted to spend my time doing on the edge of Hellgate, so I gave up that first day at 3:00 PM.


That diagram shows exactly which muscle it is. I feel most of the pain at the origin and insertion of the muscle, not in the central mass of it.

Quite often the cramp starts when I lift and twist my lower leg, to change my socks or tie a shoe lace. Or when I sit up in bed and swing my legs off the bed to stand up.

I sometimes have to step into my shoes, then bend over at the hip, like a hamstring stretch, to tie them, to avoid provoking that muscle after skiing.


I take calcium magnesium and zinc, in a tablet with vitamin D3, from the same maker as the SAMe that I take, on the advice of my orthopedist.

I also take potassium gluconate.

Separately I take vitamin B Complex, because the SAMe needs the B vitamins to work properly.

post #8 of 18
Thread Starter 


Now that I've looked up the adductor magnus, I recall the pain I had in that muscle many years ago, as a result of doing so many side kicks and roundhouse kicks in karate classes.

The experience of so many karate kicks made me a natural for side slipping and hockey stops on skis. This prevented me from carving for many many years, and crippled my skiing. We do what we know.

post #9 of 18
Originally Posted by Toecutter View Post

FYI, the most recent theory says that altered neuromuscular control, not dehydration or electrolyte depletion, are what causes muscle cramps.

I'll definitely read it.


I do know that electrolyte imbalance is always a concern and so is dehydration.  Both generally go hand in hand and some times you can be hydrated and electrolyte depleted (IE. drink too much water when sweating and you flush out the electrolytes). 


Both of these can cause neuro control issues (IE seizures).


Additionally, good electrolyte balance hydration assists in flushing out lactic acid (and other bi-product toxins) which causes muscle pains (and other issues) after a heavy workout.


But you are definitely right not all muscle cramps (pain) are caused by one specific item.  It can be one of many, the question is usually what simple measures can be taken to prevent most of them and then specifically treat/prevent the cause that is left if required.


Sorry to digress on your original question of Name that Muscle.

post #10 of 18

I know the exact pain you're feeling. I used to have this issue. It stems from weak core and hip flexors. Your body attempts to stabilize the hip/upper leg area by overworking the muscles that you're feeling pain in. There is growing evidence that a lot of leg and knee injuries are due to week hip stabilizer muscles. I do P90X Ab Ripper X, which in my opinion is one of the best set of exercises to strengthen the area from the top of your femur to the bottom of your ribcage. You do Ab Ripper X for 90 days and you will feel like a steel cage in your midsection andyou'll have less leg injuries. It's not just for pretty abs. It's functional fitness. There are a few excercizes that I suggest to quickly get those hip/upper-inside leg muscles strengthened up. This guy's youtube video covers them well:

post #11 of 18

Might be the sartorius.  'Groin' placement is always a hard one to pinpoint for certain...  it lies just over the top and curls around the inside of the vastus medialus.

A very important muscle which 'balances' the actions of the quads as well as the hamstring group. Small changes in knee alignment can make it work even harder, especially in a pedal stroke.

That's one that complains for me now, when I don't replenish electrolytes after a long (60+) bike ride, especially if it's hot and/or some serious lengthy climbing on the route. It usually doesn't get me until I've been in bed for a 1/2 hr or so. Then it cramps with a vengence - excruciating pain!  eek.gif

This started becoming a regular thing after my mid-50's. Now I try to pre-empt the lock-down with Mag/Na/Ca supplement as soon as I get off the bike...

Haven't had the issue while skiing yet, knock on wood...

post #12 of 18

More fun facts to know and trade: "Sartor" is an antiquated term for "tailor" and tailors used to work sitting crosslegged on the floor. The Sartorius muscle flexes/externally rotates the hip and flexes the knee, which is the motion that you do when you sit crosslegged on the floor.

post #13 of 18
Originally Posted by Kneale Brownson View Post

Try some potasium gluconate and magnesium sulfate tablets. They're good for charley horse issues. Sounds like you're learning to steer the skis more.

Or simply try pickle juice (no joke).

post #14 of 18
The bike-rider internest I used to see when I lived elsewhere said his idea of a good replacement for depleted electrolytes is a glass of chocolate milk.
post #15 of 18

Yes, chocolate milk seems to be the recovery drink of choice these days, which I'm all for.  The same author of the pickle juice article, Gretchen Reynolds of the Times, recently wrote an interesting book on fitness research (The First 20 Minutes).  In it, she noted that low-fat chocolate milk has the almost ideal ratio of sugars and protein to replenish glycogen lost in exercise.  She says that in one study, athletes who drank chocolate milk after working out recovered more fully than those who drank water or a sports drink, but also gained more muscle, lost more fat, and developed greater endurance.  Sounds like a win, win, win, win to me. 


The pickle juice isn't really a recovery drink, it's for relief if a muscle actually is spasming. 

post #16 of 18

Sports drinks suck for muscle recovery (no protein/fat), they are only for hydration.


As far as adductor soreness, if you have a balanced fitness routine with some squatting (doesn't have to mean heavy barbell squats) lunging, and mobility work, it will never be a problem skiing.

post #17 of 18
Thread Starter 

Returning to this old thread...


I'm having the pain in these thigh muscles as a result of using my legs to tip my skis onto their edges.


Monday Feb. 24th I made some of the finest controlled turns of my life on steeps with the temperature hovering around 12 degrees.


And by 3:30 the muscles were cramping at the initiation of my turns, just as i began rolling the skis from one edge to the other, linking right and left hand turns. When I stopped edging and let my tips drop into the fall line, the pain subsided, but I picked up speed.

At one point I began snowplowing to control my speed on the last few hundred vertical feet. The knock-kneed position actually relieved the pain. I visualized the way I've seen patrollers 'plow' to control the speed of a sled as they bring someone down the mountain.


Twice on the drive back to NYC I felt a dull ache, which started turning into cramps, but was able to move in a way that prevented a full spasm from developing.   It was painful to switch my right foot from the gas to the brake at times, though.

post #18 of 18

Phlogiston, sorry to hear your pain has returned.

I haven't heard of other people complaining of this particular pain from skiing.  

I wonder if it's common and I just haven't run into it before.


Where does the pain occur, exactly?  

I think you said above the knee on the inside of each leg.  

I think there was another spot up in the groin area.

Is that right? 

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