Muscle group:   The leg muscles

Trained muscle:   Adductors

Fitness level:   Beginner, advanced, experienced

Type of training:   Machine exercises


Adductor exercises are quite often performed on the adductor machine. But there also are some exercises that work out this muscle group with other pieces of equipment or even without any tools.

Adductor exercises

This article introduces a selection of very effective adductor exercises, especially focussing on the adductor machine and the hip pendulum. There also are different variations of side leg raises that train the adductors pretty well. All exercises for this muscle group are listed under the following link: Adductor exercises

Adductor exercises on the adductor machine

Adductor exercises on the adductor machine are very effective and can already be performed by beginners. We sit in the machine with opened legs and bent hips. The cushions should sit right above the knees, if possible. Stabilize your body with the handles on the sides and by tensing the abdominal muscles. In a controlled movement close the legs maximally against the resistance. The exercise can be intensified if we perform small impulses with almost closed legs (area of highest muscle tension).

Adductor exercises on the adductor machine

Adductor exercises on the adductor machine

Adductor exercises on the hip pendulum

Adductor exercises on the hip pendulum also represent a quite intense workout for the adductors of both legs to the same time. Here, it is more difficult to stabilize the body so beginners shouldn’t practise this exercise. Adjust the machine to have the rotation axis of the pendulum in one line with the hip joint. The cushion of the pendulum should sit right above the knee joint on the inside of the thigh. The standing leg bends slightly. The training leg should be bent. From that position pull the leg against the resistance toward the body in a controlled movement. Bring the leg back up again smoothly to complete one repetition. The workout can be intensified with small impulses in the area of highest muscle tension (almost closed legs).

Adductor exercises on the hip pendulum

Adductor exercises on the hip pendulum

Adductor exercises – forearm clamp

The forearm clamp is an isometric adductor exercise. We either sit on the floor or on a bench, chair, or similar. Open your legs and place one forearm horizontally between. The upper body leans forward keeping the back straight and the abdominals tensed. Press both legs together against the forearm (clamping it). You vary the intensity of the exercise by dosing the pressure of your muscles.

Adductor exercises, forearm clamp

Adductor exercises, forearm clamp

The exercise can also be practised with a partner working leg against leg. Here, we could train adductors and abductors alternately. One athlete starts with closed legs and the other athlete with opened legs sitting in front of each other. The athlete with closed legs now opens his legs (abductor exercise) smoothly against the opened legs of the other athlete, who starts to close his legs (adductor exercise) against the opening legs. Slowly increase the pressure until you have reached a decent training intensity.


Antagonist: Abductors

Stretching: Adductor stretch

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