The rectus femoris muscles align the hip and knee joints.
The gluteus maximus muscles connect the legs to the torso.
Working in tandem, these muscles support the legs through full range of movement - allowing each leg to be moved independently in a smooth and controlled fashion, without effort or strain - when connected to Base-Line support (and the body is free of physical restrictions).
Keeping it simple...
The gluteus maximus are the largest skeletal muscles of the body.
The superficial muscle layer of the buttocks, covering a lot of complicated anatomy that is prone to pain and injury.
When the gluteus maximus muscles are engaged (contracting) they exert influence on many structures in the pelvic region, so it is important that they are balanced and working correctly to prevent strain on other structures in the region.
Hands on buttocks.
Feel these muscles contract and tighten.
Keeping it simple...
Think of your rectus femoris muscles as strong poles down the front of each thigh, from pelvis to shin.
The rectus femoris muscles cross the hip and knee joints, correctly aligning the legs to the torso when they are fully activated.
Locate your rectus femoris muscles.
Below the knee, feel for the bump at the front of your shin bone (tibia).
Run your hands up over your kneecaps and the front of your thighs to the sticking-out bone at the front of your pelvis (hip bone).
This is the full extent of the rectus femoris muscles.
Think of pulling your kneecaps up
and a downward force from your hips.
The whole of each muscle (left and right)
should be solid and strong
aligning the hip and knee joints.
Keep your primary focus on your Base-Line muscles. Your core pillar of strength from where the rest of your body extends.
Move around to find the positions where you can activate your gluteus maximus and rectus femoris muscles. Work from your positions of strength.
Feel for balance between left and right sides. This may put you in to some asymmetric positions.
...one leg in front of the other, a foot turning in, a leg sticking out to the side, legs feeling uneven in positioning ...
This means you are starting to feel the imbalance and misalignment of your body, the twists and kinks stored on your body according to your individual trauma imprint.
Find exercises that are easiest for you to do whilst focusing on your main muscles of movement.
If you are not used to using these muscles it will take time and practice to build the connection.
Pulling my kneecaps up. Imagining a straight line from shin to hip bone. Feeling like I'm walking on stilts.
Trying to contract my big ass muscles and not the smaller muscles that lie underneath.
Feeling the release of the physical restrictions, gaining a little more freedom to move each time and working to body alignment.