When you see a person walking or running, you usually observe the leg musculature, that the quadriceps are strong, that the calves have volume… In these cases, the great forgotten ones are always the gluteus muscles. They provide mobility and stability to the pelvis; in other words, without them there would be no movement.

In today’s entry, we want to make a good anatomical reminder of the three muscle bellies: major, medium and minor. And, of course, the pyramid and the deeper musculature. Also, the most frequent injuries, their kinesiology tape and some advice on how to improve them.

What are the gluteal muscles like?

The musculature of the gluteal area is very important in gait. Hence, the relevance of this detailed summary of its anatomy.

At a deeper level there is a group of muscles that are perhaps less well known. These are the inferior and superior calf, obturator externus and internus, quadratus cruris and pyramidalis. They are all primarily responsible for the external rotation of the hip, although they also interfere with other movements. In the world of sport, specifically for runners, the piriformis is well known; in the following sections we will talk about the piriformis syndrome.


It has its origin in the pelvic surface of the sacrum, just in the sacral foramina 1 to 4, in the flange of the greater sciatic foramen and in the sacrotuberous ligament. Its insertion is at the upper edge of the greater trochanter. In other words, the piriformis runs from the sacrum to the hip.

Within the so-called glutei there are three: the lesser, middle and greater glutei, which will cover all those explained above.

Gluteus minimus

From the ilium (between the gluteal lines and the ridge of the greater sciatic notch) to the anterior border of the greater trochanter and the hip capsule. Its main action is abduction and internal rotation of the hip, as well as assisting in hip flexion.

Gluteus medius

From the ilium (between the gluteal lines and iliac crest) to the outer surface of the greater trochanter. Like the gluteus minimus, the main function is hip abduction. However, the anterior fibres assist in internal rotation and flexion of the hip; and the posterior fibres assist in external rotation and extension.

Gluteus maximus

From the posterolateral aspect of the sacrum and coccyx, gluteal aspect of the ilium, thoracolumbar fascia and sacrotuberous ligaments to the gluteal tuberosity of the femur (deep fibres) and iliotibial band (superficial fibres). Its action is hip extension and external rotation.

musculatura glúteos

What types of sports injuries occur in the gluteus?

Most sports injuries that are not related to a traumatic event have to do with weakness or increased tone of the musculature in question. The following section breaks down what happens to each muscle when one of these processes occurs.

  • Pyramidal
    • Weakness: modification of the gait, impairment of external rotation.
    • Contracture: PYRAMIDALIS SYNDROME. The shortening of the muscle causes compression of the sciatic nerve, triggering all its symptoms. It is one of the most frequent pathologies in sports involving prolonged walking (running, football, handball…).
  • Gluteus minimus
    • Weakness: the power of internal rotation and abduction of the hip decreases.
    • Contracture: the thigh will be found in abduction and internal rotation. When the patient is standing, the pelvis tilts laterally; it will be lower on the side that is contracted. It also causes internal rotation of the femur.
  • Gluteus medius
    • Weakness: characteristic limp (trunk shifts to the affected side when walking). Often weakness and sustained stretching of the adductors, as the leg is in abduction.
    • Contracture: deformation of abduction. In a standing position, the pelvis is tilted towards the affected side and the leg is slightly abducted.
  • Gluteus maximus
    • Weakness: When the weakness is bilateral, it is practically impossible for the patient to walk without crutches. If it only appears on one side, the patient has to use his hands to help him stand up straight.

How to perform kinesiology taping on the gluteus?

After all the analysis that has been done previously, first explaining the anatomy of each muscle and then expanding on what happens in case of weakness or contracture. Now, we are going to detail the two kinesiology tape that are most commonly used in the clinic. The first one to lower the tone of the pyramidal muscle and the second one to strengthen the gluteus medius.

Pyramidal kinesiology tape

Kinesiology tape to relax the pyramidal muscle. This muscle is overloaded in many injuries and can cause symptoms similar to sciatica. Prepare a Y-strip.

With the orientation described below, it acts on the monopodal support. If you want to influence the external rotation during walking (bipodal support), change the direction of the bandages.

How to apply the kinesiology tape for the piriformis muscle?

  • 1st Position of the patient: lateral decubitus. Anchor at 0% stretch on the greater trochanter.
  • 2nd Position of the patient: lateral decubitus, flexion, adduction and internal rotation of the hip. At 10% stretch, round the muscle belly to the sacrum.
  • 3rd Position of the patient: return the hip to neutral position. Anchor at 0% stretch to the sacrum.

In addition, it is very important to combine this bandage with a good stretching routine for the gluteal and pyramidal muscles, and posterior chain in general. Results will be achieved in a shorter period of time.

Gluteus medius kinesiology tape

Kinesiology tape to tone the gluteus medius muscle. This muscle is often weak and it is very important to strengthen it. Prepare a Y-strip.

How is the kinesiology tape for the gluteus medius muscle performed?

  • 1º Patient position: lateral decubitus. Anchor at 0% stretch on the medial part of the iliac creta.
  • 2nd Patient position: lateral decubitus, leg in adduction and hip flexion. With 10% stretch, go around the muscle belly up to the edge of the greater trochanter.
  • 3rd Position of the patient: return to the initial position of the leg. Anchor at 0% stretch past the trochanter.

In this case, it is indicated to combine the bandage with a strength training routine for the gluteus medius. Performing the exercise shown in the following image routinely at home; in addition, weight weights can be added to the ankles.

This article concludes the importance of the gluteal musculature, often and unfortunately forgotten. Stability and gait will depend to a large extent on their optimal condition. If you have similar problems, try to follow the advice given above. In addition, working these muscles is very important to improve most lumbar pathologies.



Made by the Technical Department of Calvo Izquierdo S.L.



How to cite this blog:

  • Calvo Izquierdo. BLOG: buttocks [Internet]. Calvo Izquierdo SL. 2024. Available at:


  • Kase, J. Wallis, T. Kase (2003) Clinical therapeutic applications of the kinesio taping method, 2nd edition.
  • Kase, K. (2003) Illustrated Kinesio Taping, 4th edition.
  • Selva, F. (2015) Neuromuscular Taping Manual of practical applications. Physi-Rehab-Kineterapy-Eivissa. 2nd edition.
  • Sijmonsma, J. (2007) Taping Neuro Muscular. Aneid Press, 1st Spanish edition.
  • Kendall’s (2007) Musculos, pruebas funcionales postura y dolor. Marbán. 5th edition.
  • Ruiz Jl, Alfonso I, Villalón J. (2008) Síndrome del músculo piramidal. Diagnosis and treatment. Presentation of 14 cases. Spanish Journal of Orthopaedic Surgery and Traumatology. 52:359-65



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