Do you notice an uncomfortable sensation of pinching each time you do squats? Yes, you’re right. It’s unnatural and it’s probably telling you that there’s something wrong.
The pinching sensation is probably coming from your hips. Hip pain is quite common among those who do squats. If people were to describe it, the pain would be somewhat like a deep pinching pain located somewhere in the front hip, which is most present when one reaches the bottom of their squat.
But don’t worry, because there are 5 proven ways to fix this. It’s easy!
1. Improve Your Internal Hip Rotation
When individuals experience the pinching sensation at the front of their hips, the tendency is to push out the knees even further out of the core. When this happens, external rotation is stretched and the hip experiences more abduction. It’s overall a bad idea because the action doesn’t help at all. Pushing your knees extends you to a region or more pain and sensitivity. Instead of reaching out, you should do the opposite.
Position yourself into a hip internal rotation. This move mobilizes the important inferior and posterior of your hip capsule. It’s the perfect position for a pain-free, pinch-free deep squatting exercise. In fact, this type of internal hip mobilization is the go-to solution for most experts.
2. Don’t Stretch Your Hip Flexors
Human nature and years of pain relief exercise have taught us that when one part of our body aches, it’s time to stretch that area. Our instincts immediately tell us to stretch those hip flexors when our hips hurt while doing those squats. The probable cause, we assume, is that the hip flexors are in a tight position. Not only is this assumption incorrect, but it doesn’t make total sense. What’s actually going on in there is that the act of squatting contracts the hip flexors at the bottom, which can cause more pain when you stretch them.
The truth is that most workout experts will tell you NOT to stretch the area that’s painful or aching. Though it may feel good a few seconds when you lay them out, it doesn’t help in the overall scheme. The pain will definitely come back with a total vengeance, and those hip flexors will contract even more.
So what do you do when that front hip suddenly becomes painful after a few squats? Fight the urge to stretch it out. Remember that this won’t fix the problem. The best thing to do is to activate your posterior chain with helpful, remedial exercises such as barbell hip thrusts (https://www.tnation.com/training/tipdohipthrustsforbetterglutes). The best solution for relaxing your hip flexors can be found in the glutes. Activate your glutes with a few moves and you will reduce the painful tightness in your front hips.
3. Practice Your Core Bracing
There’s a number of reasons why your front hips hurt when doing some squats. One of them is an improper bracing of your core. Here’s another common misconception- most coaches assume that the practice of arching the back could help the core with squats, but that’s false information. It’s really not an efficient core position to take; in fact, it could very well be the reason why you’re experiencing the pinching pain sensation in your front hips.
Here’s the explanation- when you arch the lower back for far too long, the action also causes the pelvis to tilt in an anterior manner. This movement closes out the hip joint, which leads to the uncomfortable pinching. The key is to eliminate the unnatural movement. Assume a neutral pelvis position as you do the squats. Then, fire off the muscles all around by doing a 360 degree movement in order to promote excellent pelvic alignment. This makes for quite the painless squat experience.
4. Don’t Assume the Extra Wide Stance
If you’ve been following workout tips and exercise advice from the web, you’ll notice one thing. They will all tell you that form is one of the most important elements in a good workout. This is no different from when you’re doing squats. If you’re suffering physical pinching in the hips when doing squats, then you’d best take notice of your form.
The most common factor among those who experience an uncomfortable pinching sensation are those who put their body on an extra wide stance. Sure, you get stability, but there’s a downside to it. You might not have an adequate hip mobility to keep up with the stance, which leads to more trouble down the road.
You see, you’ll have great difficulty in keeping your knees in line with your feet if you do the squats with an extra wide stance. It’s just not optimally possible, not without the appropriate adductor hip length. If you have a sub-par and a tight adductor hip length, the excessively wide stance will pull your knees inwards and your hip will be put on a flexed and internally rotated position. This position is a dangerous stance to assume if you’re about to lift a heavy load.
Now, if you experience pinching hip pain at the bottom of squats, then check your stance. If you see that it’s extra wide, then take a second or two and bring those appendages inwards for a better, more comfortable session.
5. Improve Your Ankle Dorsiflexion
Everything in our body is connected in some ways. That hurting, pinching hip can be caused by what’s happening down on your ankles. In other words, if you have a sub-par ankle dorsiflexion, then the act of squatting can extend the knees and hips even further outwards than what is necessary. Your trunk will also be locked in an unnatural position, which all lead to a hurting front hip.
Consider the following- a limited ankle dorsiflexion will close the hip angle and put the body on a forward leaning position. The awkward combo will eventually lead to excessive forward leaning of the torso and the hip flexion. The restrictions and contractions will close off your hip joint. Now you wonder why your front hips are pinched at the bottom of the squat. But good thing there’s an easy solution for this problem. All you need to do is try out the banded ankle dorsiflexion exercise for great mobilization.