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Anterior Hip – ATFL Release

By September 18, 2019 No Comments


The fascia lata is a deep fascial investment of the musculature of the thigh, and is analogous to a strong, extensible, and elasticated stocking. It begins proximally around the iliac crest and inguinal ligament, and ends distal to the bony prominences of the tibia. It is continuous with what is renamed the deep fascia of the leg (also known as the crural fascia).

The anterior tensor fascia lata (ATFL) is a gluteal muscle that acts as a flexor, abductor, and internal rotator of the hip. Its name, however, is derived from its additional role in tensing the fascia lata. It is innervated by the superior gluteal nerve, like gluteus medius and minimus, but is located more anterolaterally than the other gluteal muscles

Tight ATFL forces muscles in the anterior and posterior compartments closer to towards the femur, hip flexion. As such when the ATFL is at an optimum length and tension it supports the hip in centralising muscle weight and limits outward expansion (energy leaks) which in turn reduces the overall force required for movement at the hip joint by the other hip flexors such as the iliopsoas muscle.

An additional property of maintaining a healthy ATFL with the Waveblade is that it makes muscle contraction more efficient in compressing deep veins, which ensures adequate venous return to the heart from the lower limbs.