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Page Revision Date - 22 Jun 2015 00:48
Acetabulofemoral Joint (Hip)
Bones: The acetebulum is the cup like depression of the joint that is formed at the junction of the ilium, ischium, and pubis. The head of the femur then fits in the acetebulum. The top of the ilium is what most people know as the bone side of their hip by their waist.
Cartilage: For the large amount of movement of this joint there is a layer of highly lubricated hyaline cartilage that covers the surface of the bones in the ball and socket joint. Between the joint is a synovial sac which is a thin fluid filled membrane adding additional lubrication to the joint, its degradation can lead to arthritis. Overlaying the connection around the bones is a fibrous capsule enclosing the joint.
Ligament: The ilofemoral ligament connects from the ilium to the femur and when standing prevents your core and upper body from alling backwards. This is the strongest ligament in the body (keeping the body upright with hardly any strain) but when seated and relaxed it allows you to lean backwards. The ischiofemoral ligament is situated that it prevents excess internal rotation of the joint. Lastly the pubofemoral ligament which restricts excess abduction (moving the leg away from the body to the side) and excess rotation. All of which named after the bones they join (the bones of the acetebulum and the femur).
Tendon: There are a number of muscular tendons that come together by the joint and connect to the pubic bone and what most people know as their groin muscles.
Range of motion: Due to the shape of the head and neck of the femur the angles of the motion would be different when compared to the direction of the body of the femur, for this we will use the position of the body of the femur and using only the muscles of the leg to orient the femur. From standing the leg can flex (especially with the knee bent) so that the femur moves roughly 160 degrees. The leg can extend backwards (without bending forward) close to 60 degrees. The leg can be abducted away from the body to about 110 degrees from standing. The leg can be adducted towards the body (crossing the other leg) about 30 degrees from standing. The leg is able to outwards and inwards from a natural standing position at least 90 degrees.
Stretching: This is arguably the most desired stretched joint especially for martial artists. Stretching regularly and holding the uncomfortable pose for about 20 seconds will improve the range of motion of the joint to the numbers stated above. Stretching should be gradual and feel substantially uncomfortable without immense pain.
Conditioning: It can be very useful to condition the muscles of the leg to sustain impact, by starting with lightly having a partner kick the thigh such as a muay thai shin kick.
Injury: It is common (during much physical activity) to over flex the flexors which stretches the extensors, this is when your hamstrings hurt. In older people as previously stated the head of the femur is weaker and more likely to be damaged, otherwise the femur is the strongest bone in the body.
For information on additional joints please refer back to the Joints page.
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