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Other Terms: Gluts, Buttocks
This is a powerful group of four muscles that arise from the lateral surface of the ilium and function as some of the prime movers of the hip joint. Passing distally from the iliac crest and inguinal ligament, the deep fascia of the lower limb tightly wraps the musculature of the gluteal region and thigh. Anatomists call this extensive fascial sheet the fascia lata. The lateral aspect of the fascia lata, extending from the iliac crest to the lateral condyle of the tibia, forms a thickened band known as the iliotibial tract. Fibers from two of the gluteal muscles, the gluteus maximus and tensor fasciae latae, insert into the iliotibial tract. Through the tract these muscles can transfer their force across the knee joint to increase stability on the lateral side of the knee. The powerful gluteal muscles arise from the external surface of the ilium and surround the hip joint before inserting on the proximal end of the femur. Their importance in stabilizing the trunk over the hip joint during bipedal locomotion cannot be over-emphasized. The large gluteus maximus contributes to the characteristic profile of the buttocks.
Gluteus maximus, Gluteus medius, Gluteus minimus, and the Tensor fasciae latae