Help with groin/adductor nagging Injury

Hoping the wise folks here can offer some advice.

My upper adductor/groin region has been bothering me lately after riding. The pain is right in the area where the adductor attaches to my pelvis and is acute and almost feels like a scratching burning. Sometimes the pain will also cross over to the front of my hips and lower back.

Cycling (specifically sweet spot work and above) seems to be the only thing that really triggers the pain. I had this same problem last summer and then took a long break from riding to train for a marathon (running does not brother it). I recently started riding again and the pain resurfaced.

Last year I went to a host of PTs and even one ortho. Folks had some concerns that it might be a torn labrum, but both the physical tests and and MRI ruled that out–it also seems unlikely given that running was not a problem. Ultimately, I just hoped it was an overuse injury and switched over to running hoping it would not come back… but here I am again.

A few other points:

  • stretching does not seem to help, and from all the PTs I’ve spoken to, they don’t seem to think it related to my adductors being “too tight” – I actually have decent flexibility.

  • when I poke around in the area, the muscles do feel inflamed pretty deep down

  • I’ve had a bike fit on the bike I’ve been riding, but have not had a fit targeted at dealing with this issue since it came up.

  • The other weird thing is that the same pain will sometimes present in the right adductor one day and then the left the next day. This makes me think it might be nerve related or something.

Really just looking for any and all input/wondering if anyone has ever dealt with something similar before and what they may have done to cope. Appreciate any and all insights!


I’ve had a recurring groin/hip/back issue for years that never really resolved and a new PT had a suspicion it was adductor related and suggested a rather odd exercise called a Copenhagen (lots of variations on YouTube). It’s quite intense so I started very slow and the results have been completely surprising. After a few days the pain lessened and I rode a 210km MTB route about a week after starting. Ordinarily I would barely be able to lift my leg up over my frame after that kind of effort, but was completely fine. It’s a bit random, but could be worth looking into?


Cheers, I’ve been having a few issues in this area recently. Just tried the Copenhagen and it looked easy on youtube but I found it very tough so going to incorporate this into my routine for a while and see what happens.

Thanks for the tip.

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Side plank legs raises can target the same muscle group and it’s not as hard as the Copenhagen.


Many years ago I tore my adductor, twisting from my footballing days. The physio that helped me tried many different ways to get it to show up, she was running out of ideas and started to think there was nothing wrong with me. It took a physio of 30 years experience to come over and move me this way and that and then …“Yell”! There was a choice of surgery, but I wasn’t going to have anyone messing about around in there so took the strengthening route. Lots of exercises that involved those elastic loops around both ankles and external stationary objects strengthening the leg the other way, when you bring your legs together. I guess the side plank raises as suggested work the one way. The other way you either dangle you legs and raise the lower one up or use the elastic belts/loops! Another exercise was kicking a ball when tightening my lower abdominal muscles, guess any core strengthening will help, I would get consultation from a physio.

They all helped but I gave up football. Then squash with knee tears, another story! The tear/s is/are still there today only 2 or 3 times a year when I move a particular way it reminds me “I’m still here”, knees do that too, but I can live with that and cycling doesn’t really aggrevate any of them :slight_smile: Hope that helps a little?


Great replies everyone, thank you!


I had a similar sounding problem a few years back, although mine was caused by running and it DID turn out to be a torn labrum amongst other things. It didn’t show up on an initial MRI but did when I had one with ink injected into the joint. I chose surgery to fix it but it didn’t go very well and recovery took a long time (and I still have to be very careful).

Anyway, things I have found helped:
Pelvic floor exercises
Glute activation work
Heavy squats (but never going too low)
Stretching lower back, hip flexors and hamstrings

But my main advice is keep bothering the doctors/PTs until you can get a proper diagnosis.