The Leicester Tigers captain said: “The hardest decision a player ever has to make is when it is time to all it a day.
“I have enjoyed many fantastic moments in my career at club and international level, and if it was down to heart and mind I would love to continue playing.
"But unfortunately I have taken specialist medical advice and my body has said that is it.
“I have been able to play the game I love as a professional for a long time and I have some great memories."
Corry, 35, has won every major honour with club and country. After spells with Newcastle and Bristol, he joined Leicester Tigers in 1997 and has since won five Premiership titles, two Heineken Cups and an EDF Energy Cup, captaining the club to the first league and cup double of the professional era in 2006/07.
He won 64 caps for England, including three Rugby World Cup campaigns and two seasons as captain, and played in seven Tests for the British & Irish Lions.
Tigers chairman Peter Tom said: “Martin has been the very model of professionalism in his career, both as a player and as a captain, and he is also a great all-round gentleman.
“He is respected and admired throughout rugby and has always been a tremendous ambassador for the game as well as a world-class player.
“We count him as a true Leicester Tigers legend and he has made a huge contribution to Leicester Tigers both on and off the field.
“Martin and his family will always be welcome at Welford Road.”
Tigers chief executive Peter Wheeler said: “Martin has always been a guy to rely on, whether that is on the pitch, within the club, the country and the Lions.
“Wherever he has gone in rugby, even if people have tried to leave him out of sides, he has dominated.
“He was left out of the Lions and came in and was man of the series and was left out by England and came back to captain the team.
“His values in life are those that everybody aspires to and it seems to come naturally to him.”
England team manager Martin Johnson said: “For eight years it was a privilege to play alongside Martin Corry for Tigers, England and the British & Irish Lions.
“Martin was one of the most wholehearted and committed players that I ever played alongside. I have some fantastic memories of the times we were part of the same team.”
Martin Corry MBE
Born: October 12, 1973 in Birmingham
Club career: Newcastle, Bristol, Leicester Tigers (290 appearances & 27 tries)
Premiership winner 1998/99, 1999/2000, 2000/01, 2001/02 & 2006/07
Championship winner 2000/01
Heineken Cup winner 2000/01 & 2001/02
EDF Energy Cup winner 2006/07
England U18s, U21s, A
England 64 senior caps (1997-2007) including 14 as captain
Rugby World Cup winner 2003
Rugby World Cup runner-up 2007
Six Nations Championship winner 2000, 2001, 2003
British & Irish Lions (7 Tests 2001-05)