Groin Strain Exercises

Groin Strain Exercises

It is Friday, so let’s do the Q&A thing. Today let’s focus on a question I received on groin strain exercises.

This is the email that I got from a friend:

Anyways, wanted your professional opinion about an injury actually.

Any advice on how to best quickly heal a groin injury?

I hurt mine doing (of all things) bodyweight squats with a little too wide a stance on vacation (just doing hundreds of reps of bw squats a week to try to make up for lack of access to weights) …

So I stopped squatting about a month ago, and only deadlifted about twice in that time to about 80% if that (groin started acting up) … trying to get it to heal.

I’m pretty good on nutrition and supplementing with Vit C, MSM, Wobenzym, Glucosamine, and of course fish oil …

Layed off the squats and just focusing on bench/press stuff (along with some power cleans).

Anyways, any idea of exercises to help this thing heal? I’ve never done the good girl/bad girl machine or anything — would that help you think?

I’ve been focusing on walking more than usual and dragging the (light) sled, etc — just trying to keep blood pumping in the area without overworking the groin too much.

Much appreciation for any ideas bro! Been dealing with this for over two months and just now got on some ibuprofen cause the chiro is telling me it’s mainly inflammation at this point 🙁


I have never heard of the Hip Adductor/Abductor machine called the good girl/bad girl machine. That is funny, and it put me on the floor.

This is what I would do if it were me.

Some of the things that you will need to work on are:

  1. tissue recovery to relax and lengthen the muscle
  2. core stability in multiple planes of movement
  3. core stability of the hip in various planes of movement
  4. strengthening the hip in numerous planes of movement
  5. work on bilateral and unilateral stability
  6. working on that groin dynamically in multiple planes of movement

It sounds like a lot, but it is easy to integrate into your workout based on the appropriate exercise selection or progression.

Let’s get started.

Let’s start with the rapid-fire answers:

  • Yes, you can do the good girl/bad girl machine. This will help work on point #4 from above, but we also need to work on the other planes of movement in the hip.
  • Sled dragging is excellent. Start working on dragging the sled in different ways – sideways and backward. Start progressing your speed based on symptoms and feelings.

Let me go through a few other things that you can do.

Here is an exercise to work on point #1 from above.

Foam Rolling for a Groin Strain

CLICK HERE to go directly to the video above.

About Foam Rolling for a Groin Strain

In the above video, I go through an adductor foam rolling exercise. This exercise is excellent for helping with the adductors, helping relax the adductors, and helping the adductors recover from an injury. This would be appropriate and important for someone with a groin strain.

But it will not be the only thing you do to recover from a groin strain. Remember, you will need to integrate or isolate the five components I discussed at the top of this article.

How to do Foam Rolling for a Groin Strain

You can use a 3-foot foam roller or a 1-foot foam roller in the video. You lie down on the foam roller. With the 3 foot, you have the foam roller on the lower part of your leg from below the ankle, up the shin, and the top of the foam roller on the inside of your knee.

You have the rest of your body in a plank position and roll up the inside part of your thigh, right up to the private parts. Then you move back to the start. You move excellently, controlled manner, working on the adductor muscles.

You can add some internal rotation (rotating your thigh inwards). Start with your shin on the foam roller, and then lift your ankle and shin off the foam roller to move into more internal rotation to hit the adductor more.

There you go – those are the adductors’ rolling foam exercises.

Now let’s move on to a strengthening exercise (#4 from above).

Excellent Groin Strain Exercise

To go straight to the video, CLICK HERE.

Foot Position and the Groin

When performing leg exercises, I can change my foot position. Often, the foot position is about hip-width apart, but as I go with a wider foot position, it targets the adductors even more. Let’s go through a strengthening exercise for the groin.

How to do the Bodyweight Hip Thrust

One example of an exercise you can do is a bodyweight hip thrust.

If you have a shoulder injury, you may have to modify the height of the bench. Here I get into position with my shoulders on the bench. You have your feet about hip-width apart and then work them out to about a shoulder-width apart. You bring your seat down towards the ground, close to the floor. This is the starting position.

Then you drive your hips up, so your knees, hips, and shoulders are in good alignment. You are working on gluteus maximus. With a broader foot position, you are working the adductors a lot more when it comes to the stability of the hip and dynamically lengthening.

It Targets Hip Movement

I also like this exercise as it works on hip movement. I want to move down where my seat touches the ground and back up. Then I can work into hip flexion back to neutral.

Injury Tips

A few things to remember if you have specific injuries:

  • Vertical Shin – If you have patellofemoral pain syndrome, ACL injury, or a meniscus tear, work on keeping the shin in a vertical position or a negative slope.
  • No Stress on the SI Joint – If you have an SI Joint injury, watch the end position of the thrust. You should not feel stress in your SI joint, but decrease how high you thrust if you do.
  • Shoulder Pain – If you have shoulder impingement, decrease the bench height or the depth you drop your hips.
  • Knee Pain – One thing to remember about the wider foot position is it puts more strain on the medial part of the knee. If you have a meniscus injury or medial osteoarthritis, it puts a little more pressure on that area. It would help if you were cautious of the excess strain.
Well, CO, I hope that helps you out.
Just wrapping up with a few kind words:

Helped My Rotator Cuff Clients

Practical Rotator Cuff Exercises have helped me provide exercise programs for my clients with rotator cuff injuries. They feel confident that the program will be effective and that the exercise program will not cause further harm to the client’s shoulder. The exercises included are easy to teach. Most are simple enough that clients can feel confident doing them independently without worrying about whether or not their technique is correct once they have been shown how to do the exercise.

Jeff Peterson
Personal Trainer
Racine, WI, USA

Here are a few more kind words about Muscle Imbalances Revealed:

Okay, have a great weekend, and we will talk to you soon.

Rick Kaselj, MS

P.S. – Here are a few other exercises that will help you out with your groin:

Single-Leg Squat with Foam Roller

Foam Roller Hamstring Exercise

Effective Rotator Cuff Exercises