How To Stop Thigh Pain After Squats

August 18, 2022 0 Comments

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In this article I will be answering the question “how to stop thigh pain after squats?”. There are many reasons why you may be experiencing thigh pain after squats.

There are also various ways to reduce or stop thigh pain that you experience after squats. I will delve deeper into this.

How To Stop Thigh Pain After Squats?

In order to stop thigh pain after squats you need to know the cause of the thigh pain. It could be normal DOMs which will lessen as you get used to squats and do them regularly.

It could also be a form related issue. You need to analyse how you are squatting and make alterations. You may also need to back off the intensity with your squats so that you are not getting too much thigh pain and soreness.

Warming up properly will also help to minimise thigh pain after squats. If you jump into heavier sets with insufficient warm ups then you are asking for trouble. 

Pain Will Lessen With Repeat Exposure

It is worth stating from the outset that if you are just starting doing squats for the first time, you will experience thigh pain and DOMs (delayed onset muscle soreness). 

However, as you perform the squat regularly you will experience less pain and your body will become accustomed to the movement. 

The same thing happens when you take a break from the squat for a small period of time and then return to it. After the first squat workout back you will likely experience DOMs. But get into the routine of regular squatting again and your pain will diminish. 


Stimulate Don’t Annihilate

 To use the wise words of bodybuilder Lee Haney “stimulate don’t annihilate”. If you see someone doing set after set of heavy gruelling squats and punishing themselves to the max every session, it is no surprise if they are experiencing lots of pain and having trouble recovering.

Instead, it is better to stimulate the muscle when doing squats but don’t go overboard with too much volume and intensity regularly. This way you will be able to recover from workouts better and have far less thigh pain. 

The mantra “more is better” is not always true. In the case of training it can be wise to keep things simple and don’t incorporate too much unnecessary volume just for the sake of punishing your body.

There is a good article by about this concept, you can read it here.

Warm Up Properly

It is always important to warm up properly when you are exercising. Insufficient warm up can not only increase the risk of injury but also of muscle soreness.

Before you squat you should open up the hips. Sit down into a deep squat position and use your elbows to push your knees out. Then warm up with the empty bar for a few sets and gradually increase the weight.

What you will find by doing a thorough warm up is that your control of the weight on heavier sets will be better. The movement pattern will end up being more efficient. 

Alter Your Squatting Style

If you squat high bar or close stance you are emphasising the quads more. As such, with heavy weights you are likely to experience thigh soreness and pain sometimes. 

If you want to shift the focus away from the quads and more onto the posterior chain musculature, the best way would be to do a low bar squat. This is where you position the bar lower on the back and you would lean over a bit more to keep the weight over the mid foot. 

The same is true with bulgarian split squats. The further you position your front leg away from the bench, the more hamstring and glute involvement there is. The closer your front leg is from the bench the more the quads are involved.

By using the variation that doesn’t involve the quads as heavily, you will be less likely to suffer from thigh pain as you exert yourself to the limits. The video below demonstrates the low bar squat form. 

Foam Rolling

Foam rolling your quads after squatting is a good way to provide myofascial release. It will help to reduce soreness in the quads which will help you recover faster between workouts. 

You can also choose to foam roll your quads before squatting. This can help to actually improve your squat form and get everything loosened up. Foam rolling in this manner regularly will certainly help to reduce any thigh pain that you would normally encounter.


Final Thoughts

To conclude, in this article I have answered the question “how to stop thigh pain after squats?”. To do this you would need to be squatting with good technique and be comfortable performing the movement regularly.

Very importantly, you shouldn’t go overboard with too much volume and intensity on a regular basis on squats. This is perhaps one of the biggest culprits for people experiencing a lot of thigh pain after squats.

Foam rolling the quads before and after your squats can also aid in reducing thigh pain and soreness. 

If you have any questions please leave them in the comments. As always, stay safe and enjoy your training!

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