I’ve been practicing the pistol squat over the last few weeks, and unfortunately I think I might have strained my left quadricep in the process.  It was either doing the pistol, or maxing out on my squats at the gym… but I think it was definitely a squat.   (The pistol squat is the one where you squat down on one leg, with the other extended out in front, holding a good-sized kettlebell all the way down, and back up again.)

Anyway, I’ve been limping around for the last few days expecting to feel better… and though most quadricep strains will heal on their own, I tend to be a bit impatient with these things.

So when I was outside doing some basic kettlebell swings and feeling the strain on my quad… I got out my old yoga block!  I stood on one foot, leaned forward and got myself into the “Dancer” pose.  (I love this anatomical drawing!)

The technique is to push your foot back into the palm of your hand, keeping a steady pressure into your hand (but giving back resistance at the same time).  Plus, with adequate height on the lifted leg, you will engage your quad into a really great stretch.

I probably just had a grade 1 strain, meaning that only about 10% of the muscle fibers were torn.  (Grade 2 and 3 are more serious injuries… and will take much longer to heal depending on the percentage of torn muscle fibers.)

The next morning??  No Pain!!!  I walked down the stairs without hobbling, and that was a marvelous feeling!

Moral of the story? Don’t underestimate the power of yoga!

Now back to the pistol squat…

Peace Out,

  1. This is a good stretch to know! I’m dealing with a strain the week before a race, and am antsy about training. Restorative yoga is definitely in the mix.

  2. Jack Cyp says:

    I’m glad you are ok.
    But take it easy ya… The pistol squat is tough!

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