I have a client who has constant pain in her hip flexor. She feels it is a result from the reconstruction of her ACL (on the same leg).Throughout her rehab and regular exercise routine, she experiences pain in the hip flexor region and feels it "kick in" when doing inverted leg presses, lunges and glute presses. Please advise as to what I can do to help alleviate this (outside of stretching) and alternative exercises that can strengthen the legs without involving the hip.
If someone is experiencing pain in the hip flexor region while performing leg pressing exercises, there is a very good chance they have increased tightness/tension in their piriformis and adductor magnus muscle. This prevents the hip joint from moving properly and can cause pain (this is common in people with ACL injuries). Try foam rolling the piriformis and stretching the adductor magnus (read Self Myofascial Release Techniques by Alan Russell).
To stretch the adductor magnus:
- Have the client stand with both feet facing straight ahead.
- Place the effected leg (leg with pain) up on a six to 10 inch platform to the side of the body such as a Reebok Step.
- Have them draw in their abs and bend over as if trying to touch their toes. They should feel this in their groin/back of the leg.
- Foam roll the piriformis first, then stretch the adductor magnus at least once a day.
If the symptoms do not reduce in a few days, refer your client to the proper medical authority.