Vastus Medialis: We all do exercises to ensure the proper functioning of various muscle groups, but most often the medial ones are quite ignored. This can sometimes lead to injuries and vastus medialis is the one in that category. Also referred to as the teardrop muscle, this medial region is one of the four quadriceps muscles that’s located in the thigh’s frontal region above the kneecap. Exercises related to vastus medialis can help you improve knee stability.
Vastus Medialis Pain
Some people have to deal with leg injuries and knee pain. Chances are it is vastus medialis pain. Vastus medialis is a common area where the problem arises such as the weakness in the muscle group due to which it gets tired or fatigued quite early than usual. Another problem is the delay in the activation of the vastus medialis oblique (VMO) due to which they give up so quickly.
People with weak vastus medialis are prone to have knee instability and dislocation. So, vastus medialis training becomes a necessity if you’re one of those people suffering from anterior knee pain. Strengthening the VMO is very crucial. Therefore, you should be devoting a good time to vastus medialis training if you want to work on your legs properly and prevent knee injuries as well.
List of Exercises for Vastus Medialis
Given below is the list of vastus medialis exercises that you can do to help strengthen your knees at home and also at the gym. Along with it, we’ll also cover the vastus medialis stretch after this list. Keep in mind that the vastus medialis and vastus medialis oblique are not needed to be trained separately as they constitute the same muscle group.
- Activate the VMO
Firstly, if you want to train any muscle group, you need to activate the muscle group to improve the blood circulation in that specific region. All you need is a foam ball for the few exercises.
Begin with sitting upright in a chair and keep your knees bent. Place the ball between your knees and keep the feet flat on the ground. Now, place your thumbs on the softer area of the knee’s inner region, above the kneecaps.
Clench your glutes and squeeze the foam ball with the help of your knees only. By doing this, you’ll feel the tension around the region where you’ve put your thumbs. This shows that your vastus medialis is getting activated.
Also, if this exercise didn’t help you, try clenching your buttocks and knees.
- Twisted Leg Raise
Twisted leg raise is another alternative for the activation of vastus medialis. Take a yoga mat and lie down on your back. Keep one of your legs straight in the air while the other one in a bent position. Now, rotate the foot to 20 o externally and slowly lift your legs until both the thighs are in parallel. Keep holding the position for at least 3 seconds and then slowly bring down the leg with the foot rotated outwards. Repeat it on the other side.
- Ball Clenching
For the ball clenching exercise, lie on your back and keep the ball underneath the knees. Clench your buttocks and try to squeeze the ball while raising legs straight up in the air. Hold this position for 3 seconds and then slowly bring your foot down. Now, repeat the same thing with the other leg. Repeat this exercise for more sets and try to increase the repetitions to get the maximum activation in the vastus medialis.
If you’re able to perform higher reps of the above-given vastus medialis training exercises with the proper activation and control, then you’re good to go with its advanced versions to bring more activation. Now, you don’t have to use the ball. So, let’s have a look at the advanced exercises.
For doing proper lunges, first, acquire the standing position with the feet distance not more than the width of the hip. Take a big step in the forward direction and keep the knee of the extended leg at 90 degrees and bring another knee to almost touching the ground. Make sure your forward bent knee doesn’t exceed further than the toe of the same leg.
Now, return to the starting position and perform the same thing for the opposite side. It is better to do it with more sets and higher reps to get the maximum activation.
Also, if you’re unable to maintain balance while doing lunges, then you can take the support of any object, be it a bench at your gym or a wall. Also, you can hold dumbbells in your hand to proliferate the difficulty level.
- Leg press
Leg presses are somewhat difficult than the other exercises but are also crucial when it comes to complete leg training. This exercise can be done at the gym. So, try to keep the weights low or you can prefer doing it without putting any weight.
Read Also: Squat Thrust: Benefits and Techniques
Sit in the leg press machine with your feet on its platform being hip-width apart and your toes pointing forward. When you’re ready, remove the safety lock and slowly bring the platform lower until your knees are about to touch your chest. Return to the starting position slowly.
Besides, you can add more weight if you want but always keep someone near you as a spotter.
Vastus Medialis Stretch
For vastus medialis stretch, try to hold any object for support. Bring you heel up behind your hip and hold the ankle with your hand. Now, try pulling the ankle towards your hip. Avoid bending forward. This stretching exercise will work on all of the quads muscles but it will be more effective for the vastus medialis if you bring the foot closer to the buttocks. Hold the position for at least 30 seconds and repeat it on the other side. Do 3 sets of vastus medialis stretch and try to stand straight without bending.
I Hope, the aforementioned details might be useful and it will be a learning curve for the readers to do Vastus exercises properly to avail of its benefits.