STEP 1: How to Locate the Vastus Lateralis Trigger Point #One
The Vastus Lateralis is also sometimes called the ”Vastus Externus”. It is the largest and most powerful portion of the Quadriceps Femoris, a muscle in the thigh. Together with the other muscles in the quadriceps group, it serves to extend the knee joint, moving the lower leg forward. This muscle arises from a series of flat, broad tendons attached to the femur, and attaches to the outer border of the patella (or kneecap). It ultimately joins with the other muscles that make up the quadriceps tendon, travelling over the knee to connect to the tibia. This muscle has five trigger points. To find the first trigger point, locate your hip joint. While standing, lean against a wall and keep a light hand on the outside of your upper thigh. Then, move your thigh to feel the bony protuberance of the hip joint moving under your hand. The fifth trigger point is present along the outer side of the thigh, two to three finger widths below the hip joint.
STEP 2: How to Self-Release the Vastus Lateralis Trigger Point # One
To massage the Vastus Lateralis, you will require a ball, a pillow, and a yoga block or bolster. First, locate the muscle’s trigger point as shown in the previous video. The Vastus Lateralis’ trigger point is located along the outside of the thigh, two or three finger widths below the hip joint.Next, lie down on the ground and place the ball on the trigger point. Positioning yourself over the ball, use your body weight to apply pressure. Should you care to increase that pressure, consider placing the yoga block near your knee, resting your top leg over the block. Please be advised as well that you should only perform this massage if you feel relaxed in this position. If that is the case, hold for 30 seconds and release.
STEP 3: How to Stretch the Vastus LateralisTrigger Point # One
We learned from the location video that the Vastus Lateralis helps in the straightening of the leg, or with the extension of the knee. Otherwise, when the leg is straight, the muscle is contracted. To stretch it, we must do the opposite. The simplest way of doing so is by sitting upright on your knees. There is complete flexion at the knee joint here and you will feel the stretch at the front of your thighs. If you have knee pain, this move will not be possible in one go; you will have to ease into the move over a few days. Take some mats, a bolster, or a pillow and place it between your calf and thighs, then sit down on it. You can make it higher or lower as is most comfortable for you. If you are able to sit on your legs comfortably, you can increase the stretch by leaning backward. Hold the position for about 30 seconds and release. Do it every day until you can complete the stretch without any external support.