Why Do Squats Hurt My Groin? All The Answers Here To Get Back On Track
Squats are a fundamental exercise in many fitness routines, known for their ability to build strength and muscle in the lower body.
However, some individuals experience discomfort or even pain in the groin area during or after performing squats.
This article aims to shed light on this common issue, exploring the reasons behind groin pain during squats and providing practical solutions to address it.
Understanding the causes of this discomfort is crucial, as it not only affects your workout routine but can also indicate underlying health issues that require attention.
Why Do Squats Hurt My Groin?
Squats are a comprehensive lower body exercise that engages multiple muscle groups, including the adductor muscles in the groin area. When you experience groin pain during squats, it’s often due to factors such as hip impingement, a strained adductor longus muscle, athletic pubalgia (also known as a sports hernia), or improper form and overtraining. Hip impingement is a condition where there’s abnormal contact between the ball and socket of the hip joint, causing pain during movements like squats. A strained adductor longus, one of the main muscles in the inner thigh, can occur if the muscle is weak, not properly warmed up, or if squats are performed with incorrect form. Athletic pubalgia is a strain or tear in the soft tissues of the lower abdomen or groin area, which can be exacerbated by squats. Lastly, performing squats with incorrect form or overtraining can put excessive strain on the muscles and joints, leading to various injuries, including groin pain. It’s crucial to maintain proper form, warm up and cool down properly, and listen to your body to prevent and manage groin pain during squats.
Understanding the Squat Exercise
The squat is a compound exercise that engages multiple muscle groups. It primarily targets the quadriceps, hamstrings, and glutes, but also involves the core and lower back. However, what many people don’t realize is that the groin area, or more specifically, the adductor muscles located in the inner thigh, also play a significant role in this exercise.
When performing a squat, you start by standing upright with your feet hip-width apart. As you lower your body, you bend your knees while keeping your chest up and your back straight. The goal is to bring your hips lower than your knees, all while maintaining balance and control. During this movement, your adductor muscles work to stabilize your legs and maintain your balance.
The involvement of the adductor muscles in squats is where the connection to groin pain comes in. If these muscles are tight, weak, or strained, it can lead to discomfort or pain in the groin area during squats. In the following sections, we will delve deeper into the common causes of this pain and provide practical solutions to prevent and alleviate it.
Common Causes of Groin Pain During Squats
Groin pain during squats can be attributed to several factors. The most common causes include:
- Hip Impingement: This is a condition where there is abnormal contact between the ball and socket of the hip joint, leading to pain during certain movements, including squats.
- Strained Adductor Longus: The adductor longus is a muscle in the inner thigh that can be strained during squats, especially if the muscles are not properly warmed up or if the exercise is performed with improper form.
- Athletic Pubalgia (Sports Hernia): This is a strain or tear of any soft tissue (muscle, tendon, ligament) in the lower abdomen or groin area. It’s common in athletes who play sports that involve a lot of twisting and turning.
- Improper Form or Overtraining: Performing squats with incorrect form or overtraining can put excessive strain on the muscles and joints, leading to various injuries, including groin pain.
Detailed Analysis of Each Cause
- Hip Impingement: Hip impingement, or femoroacetabular impingement (FAI), occurs when the ball of the hip joint does not fit perfectly into the socket. This imperfect fit can cause the hip bones to rub against each other during movement, leading to pain and discomfort. In the context of squats, the deep bending involved can exacerbate this rubbing, leading to groin pain.
- Strained Adductor Longus: The adductor longus is one of the main muscles in the inner thigh that works to pull the legs together. During squats, this muscle is actively engaged to help stabilize the legs. If this muscle is weak, not properly warmed up, or if the squats are performed with incorrect form, it can lead to a strain in this muscle, causing groin pain.
- Athletic Pubalgia (Sports Hernia): Athletic pubalgia, also known as a sports hernia, is a strain or tear in the soft tissues of the lower abdomen or groin area. This injury is common in sports that involve a lot of twisting and turning, but it can also occur from squats, especially if the exercise is performed with improper form or if the individual has a pre-existing weakness in this area.
- Improper Form or Overtraining: Squats are a complex exercise that requires proper form to be effective and safe. If squats are performed with incorrect form, it can put excessive strain on the muscles and joints, leading to various injuries, including groin pain. Similarly, overtraining, or doing too many squats without adequate rest, can also lead to injuries due to the excessive strain on the muscles and joints.
Prevention and Remedies
Preventing groin pain during squats largely involves proper form, adequate warm-up and cool-down exercises, and listening to your body. Here are some key points to consider:
- Proper Form and Technique for Squats: Ensure your feet are hip-width apart and your toes are pointed slightly outwards. As you squat down, keep your chest up, your back straight, and your knees in line with your toes. Avoid letting your knees cave inwards.
- Importance of Warm-Up and Cool-Down Exercises: Warm-up exercises prepare your muscles for the workout ahead and can help prevent injuries. Similarly, cool-down exercises help your muscles recover and reduce post-workout stiffness and discomfort.
- Recommended Stretches for the Groin Area: Regular stretching can help improve flexibility and reduce the risk of injuries. Some effective stretches for the groin area include the butterfly stretch, the seated groin stretch, and the standing groin stretch.
- When to Seek Medical Attention: If your groin pain is severe, if it doesn’t improve with rest, or if it’s accompanied by other worrying symptoms (like a popping sensation, inability to walk, or swelling), seek medical attention promptly.
Recovery is Key
CBD, or cannabidiol, has been gaining attention for its potential benefits in managing pain and inflammation, which could be helpful for those experiencing groin pain from squats. CBD interacts with the body’s endocannabinoid system, which plays a role in regulating pain and inflammation.
A study published in the Frontiers in Pharmacology found that preclinical and clinical studies have indicated a potential benefit of CBD use in chronic pain associated with multiple conditions. Therefore, using CBD products, such as those available at Sport CBDs Store, might aid in the recovery process by alleviating pain and inflammation in the groin area caused by squats.
However, it’s important to note that while CBD can help manage symptoms, it’s not a cure for the underlying causes of groin pain, such as hip impingement or muscle strain.
Therefore, proper form, adequate rest, and appropriate medical attention remain crucial. For more information on how CBD works, check out this Beginner’s Guide to CBD.
How do you fix groin pain when squatting?
Rest, ice, compression, and elevation (RICE) can help manage minor groin pain. For persistent or severe pain, it’s best to seek medical attention.
Are squats bad for the groin?
Not necessarily. Squats are a beneficial exercise for strengthening the lower body. However, improper form or overtraining can lead to injuries, including groin pain.
How do I stop my inner thigh from hurting when I squat?
Ensuring proper form, warming up before exercising, cooling down afterwards, and regularly stretching the inner thigh muscles can help prevent pain.
Why does my inner thigh hurt when squatting?
This could be due to a strain in the adductor muscles, which are located in the inner thigh. It could also be a sign of hip impingement or a sports hernia.
Experiencing groin pain during squats is a common issue that can stem from various causes, including hip impingement, a strained adductor longus, athletic pubalgia, or improper form and overtraining. Each of these causes has its unique characteristics and implications, but they all underscore the importance of proper form and technique when performing squats.
It’s crucial to remember that squats are a complex exercise that engages multiple muscle groups, including the adductor muscles in the groin area. Therefore, ensuring proper form, warming up before exercising, cooling down afterwards, and regularly stretching the groin area can significantly help prevent pain and injuries.
Moreover, it’s essential to listen to your body during exercise. If you experience persistent or severe groin pain during squats, it’s best to seek medical attention promptly. Exercise should enhance your health and wellbeing, not compromise it.
In the end, understanding why squats might hurt your groin and how to prevent and address this issue can help you maintain a safe and effective fitness routine.
Do squats hurt your groin? Have our tips been beneficial to your training? We’d love to hear your feedback, so please share your thoughts in the comments section below.