Physical activity is a proposed factor in the development of hip pathologies in males and females. The main objectives of this study were to investigate the influence of gender on isometric hip muscle strength, hip range of motion and gluteus medius thickness at rest, during contraction and onset activation.

Material and methods:
A cross-sectional study was carried out. Hip range of motion, hip muscle strength and gluteus medius thickness at rest (B-mode ultrasound) and onset activation (M-mode ultrasound) were measured in thirty asymptomatic university athletes without a history of hip pain.

A total of fifteen males (30 hips) and fifteen females (30 hips) with a mean age of 22 ±6.5 and 20 ±2.75 years were recruited. Females demonstrated greater hip range of motion in flexion, abduction and internal rotation in dominant and non-dominant legs (p < 0.05) but no differences were found in extension, adduction and external rotation (p > 0.05). Furthermore, females showed less isometric hip muscle strength in hip flexion, extension, abduction, adduction, internal and external rotation (p < 0.05) but not in strength ratios (p > 0.05). In addition, female exhibited lower gluteus medius thickness at muscle contraction, smaller differences in rest-contraction thickness, but no differences were observed for rest thickness or contraction velocity.

This study found that asymptomatic female athletes demonstrated greater hip flexion, abduction and internal rotation ROM, lower isometric hip muscle strength and different gluteus medius thickness and onset activation compared with asymptomatic male athletes.

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