How to Stretch Thigh Muscles (4 Easy Exercises)

Christiana Mikesch, CPT
Published by Christiana Mikesch, CPT | Senior Coach
Last updated: August 9, 2023
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Poor flexibility in your thigh area can cause many side effects, such as lower back pain, inability to focus on your work, and decreased performance for certain activities.

This is why incorporating static and dynamic stretches is necessary for everyone looking to continue functioning normally throughout the day without any side effects listed above.

As a certified personal trainer and conducting more than 30 hours of research, I singled out the best exercises to stretch your thigh muscles.

After reading the article, you will know how to perform 4 static/dynamic stretch thigh exercises to get your adductor muscles functional again.

Quick Summary

  • To stretch your thigh and the rest of the adductor muscle groups, you should implement exercises such as hip flexor stretch, standing hamstring stretch, adductor stretch, and frog stretch.
  • It is best to perform these stretching exercises a couple of times a day, even if you are in a working position or having regular sports activities.
  • Every static stretching exercise must be held for at least 15 seconds since that has been proven to be when our system turns off the inhibitory response for contracting the stretched muscle group, allowing you to enter deeper into the stretch position.

4 Exercises to Stretch Your Thighs

A woman stretching her thighs on a yoga mat

Stretching exercises have been widely used to increase the flexibility of our muscles, but some studies indicate results for the recovery process, too [1].

To get the most out of the 4 exercises, follow the instructions carefully and recommended dosage below this section.

Here are the 4 simple exercises to stretch your thighs.

"You train for better strength, endurance, and cardio, but when was the last time you took the time to help your body move better? Mobility and flexibility can often be overlooked as they may not be as fun as other aspects of fitness. Lifting a barbell overhead or picking up clothes off the floor both rely on these two variables, so you shouldn’t lack either."

- Bree-Anna Burick, Certified Personal Trainer

1. Hip Flexor Stretch

A woman doing hip flexor stretches

Hip flexor stretch may sound contradictory because it primarily stretches the iliacus and psoas major muscles (those two form the popular iliopsoas muscle).

However, hip flexor stretch exercise is excellent for stretching your inner thighs, too, and will help you get that tension out and allow for better recovery afterward.

How to Perform a Hip Flexor Stretch

  1. Assume a lying position on the ground, bed, favorite exercise mat, or any other comfortable flat surface with enough space to fit your whole body.
  2. Keep your left leg straight while pulling the right knee to your chest without changing the curvature of your lumbar spine.
  3. Hold that position for at least 15 seconds, then switch the working leg.
  4. Repeat for a couple of sets and try to perform this stretch a couple of times a day if you successfully find the time to do it.

Read More: Lying Hip Flexor Stretches

2. Standing Hamstring Stretch

Standing hamstring stretch is a classical stretching exercise that will also stretch your adductor muscles and biceps femoris, semitendinosus, and semimembranosus posterior chain muscles.

How to Perform a Standing Hamstring Stretch

  1. Assume a standing position with your legs and feet as close to each other as possible. Avoid hip or feet shoulder-width apart stance.
  2. Keep your knees extended during the whole motion of the exercise.
  3. Start the exercise by bending forward in your torso to stretch the hamstrings.
  4. The first variation of the exercise is when you only bend your hips and avoid bending in your thoracic spine. However, you may bend the thoracic spine and stretch your back too.
  5. Hold the end position for at least 15 seconds.
  6. Rest a little bit and repeat a few times in a single session.

Also Read: Seated Hamstring Stretches In Chair

3. Adductor Stretch

A person doing adductor stretch for the thighs

Adductor stretch does exactly what the name suggests; it effectively stretches your adductor complex through a more dynamic setup.

How to Perform Adductor Stretches

  1. Assume a stance wider than shoulder-width apart so you prepare for the side lunge motion to stretch your thigh muscles in the deep lateral squat position.
  2. Start the exercise by performing a side lunge on your right side by bending in your hips, knees, and ankles.
  3. When you reach the bottom lateral squat position, hold it for at least 15 seconds.
  4. Reverse the motion and repeat on the other side.

4. Frog Stretch

The frog stretch is my favorite since it will most impact your inner and outer thighs.

How to Perform a Frog Stretch

  1. Place your legs in the starting frog stretch position by abducting both limbs and placing the knees on the floor.
  2. Sit deep into the stretch by pushing your hips and butt behind. This will increase the stretch in your adductors.
  3. Hold the position for at least 15 seconds and repeat several times.

How to Tell if You’re Exercising at the Right Level

A person working out her thighs outside

The process of telling if you are exercising and stretching at the right level is self-explanatory, so you will need to finish a couple of training sessions to see the results.

Suppose the soreness or tightness is still present after a couple of workouts and several weeks.

In that case, you may want to incorporate other exercises, decrease the intensity of lower-body workouts, or simply perform more extensive stretching sessions.

How Much Should I Hold Each Stretch Position?

You should hold each stretch position for at least 15 seconds.

Studies show that the inhibitory reflex, the myotatic reflex, stops being active after 15 seconds of holding a static stretching position [2].


How Can I Loosen My Thigh Muscles?

You can loosen your thigh muscles by placing your right leg and left leg in the kneeling stretching frog position. This exercise is particularly useful for stretching inner and outer thigh muscles, but you must gently pull not to hurt your adductors.

What Causes Tight Thigh Muscles?

Repetitive movements and job positions requiring a substantial amount of sitting cause tight thigh muscles. In those scenarios, you must implement inner thigh stretch exercises to loosen the inner thigh muscles and avoid strains and low back pain.

How Do You Stretch the Front Thigh Muscles?

To stretch the front thigh muscles, you must perform inner thigh stretches based on a hip-flexor-based exercise. During this exercise, your front and inner thigh stretch, especially when your body is as close to the left knee or right knee based on the side you pick.

How Can I Remove Thigh Pain and Soreness?

You can remove thigh pain and soreness by consuming a high-quality and tested magnesium supplement.

A magnesium supplement is well-known for its effects on sore and tight muscles.

It will effectively negate the effects of cramps, soreness, and tightness in your inner thighs, allowing you to function normally throughout the day without worrying about excessive tightness in your adductor area.

I suggest reading out a guide on the best magnesium supplements so you can pick the product that will be the best for you according to your needs, desires, age, gender, and similar factors.

Let me know your favorite stretch for getting your thigh muscles functional again without excessive tightness.


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