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Rectus Femoris Strain/Tendinitis

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  • Rectus Femoris Strain/Tendinitis

    So I have had a pain in the front of my hip that starts a few inches above parallel and, depending on the day, can get worse or better as I hit parallel. There are days the pain is very little, and with some stretching and warm-ups the pain for the most part resolves. Then there are days I cant get much below a quarter squat. Outside of training it can feel sore and gets stiff. How bad it is can greatly depend on fatigue and stress from previous workouts. I have basically dx it to be the tendon of my rectus femoris. All the research, pain and symptoms points to it. I dont think its a tear but more likely a strain or inflammation from over use and being undertrained. Most of the sites say time/rest is what is needed to heal it and then strength exercises to help strengthen it so I can squat without issue. So my question is I do not want to stop squating all together. I just got back to barbell squating after a long hiatus, every other aspect of my lifting has been going up just fine, and i would hate for my squats to fall behind. Additionally squats are my most challenging lift which makes this an extra annoying situation. So the question is, would squats to the level of where I start to feel the strain, i.e. pin squats, work to help strengthen the tendon and muscle during the healing process? Then as I start feeling better start going closer and closer to depth. Or should I bit the bullet, take a week, do some light body weight exercises for the effected area until squating doesn't feel uncomfortable.

    If anyone has had any experience with this or suggestions please let me know. Thanks

  • #2
    I think this issue most likely stems from doing more squatting than you were adapted to handling when you reintroduced squats to your program.

    read this if you haven't:

    You're intuition is correct, you should probably scale back your training a little so that you are doing a tolerable amount of squatting. Squat variations that cut ROM are a valuable option if a full ROM squat is intolerable. However, it sounds like your pain fluctuates a fair bit (as is normal) so you should probably take advantage of the days that you can tolerate full ROM squats (you can tolerate it if the pain is not an amount that frightens you, and you don't get a spike in pain soon after). It makes sense that warming up and moving around helps you feel better, I think the general consensus is that 'motion is lotion' and your squat sessions should start with the empty bar and then gradually build up to your first set.

    You are in a good position as your entry point (light squats, and pin squats) is quite close to your goal (heavy skwaats) so I expect you to be able to effectively self rehab this and be where you want to be relatively soon. That said, if the issue persists longer than you think is acceptable, or you're having trouble making progress, then you may want to post a question in the moderated section of this forum so that the BBM rehab team can give you some guidance.


    • #3
      Thank you for taking the time to read my post and give your thoughts. It was beneficial to hear that my perception and solution to the problem seems to be appropriate. After I left this post the other day I went and looked at my training log and notes. I was working on a two day rotation with one day of rest in between each session. Day A was Squat, Bench, Lunges and Bent Barbell Rows; Day B was Deadlifts, Bulgarian Split Squats, and Over Head Press. I admit that I was not as read up on programming and SRA curves as I am now. Looking back on my program I actually think I was setting myself up for failure from a few things that were made apparent once looking over my notes.

      1.) My Deadlift and my Squats were to close together. Any time I preformed a taxing session of Deadlifts, which is the lift I can lift the most weight, the pain in my RF was very much an issue in my proceeding Squatting session. On days that my Deadlifts were less taxing, my Squat was fine and I felt the weight was way easier to handle and in most case I felt I could've done more. I think the Deadlifts were causing fatigue to my RF and my Squat was compounding it.

      2.) Lack of understanding that the Squat and Deadlift have two different SRA curves, with the Deadlift having the longer of the two. This would mean that Deadlifts require more time in between harder session to recover and probably need to be trained less frequently than my Squat. So by not accounting for this and just continuing my training it was compounding the stress on the most over used muscle i.e. my RF.

      3.) Not properly planning deload weeks/days. While I was varying the weight from week to week I did not account for total accumulated stress that would eventually need to be dealt with by deloading every several weeks.

      In closing I will proceed with my recovery work as stated earlier until my squat my injury has recovered and my squat has improved. I also need to reevaluate my programming method and account for a little more than I had in the past. Thank you for your help and advice, it was much appreciated. I will be viewing the link to the information you sent me later today. Again thank you for your help.