Vastus Lateralis – Anatomy, Purpose, Treatment + Injury Prevention

Vastus Lateralis – Anatomy, Purpose, Treatment + Injury Prevention

The quadriceps consist of four different muscles including the rectus femoris, the vastus lateralis, vatus medialis and the vastus intermedius. The entire quad muscle works collectively to help one extend the knee. Each part of the quad also has a specific role on the team. It is essential for any person but especially for athletes to keep the quads healthy. The quads play an instrumental role in walking, running, jumping and cutting movements.

Vastus Lateralis Anatomy

Vastus Lateralis

The Vastus Lateralis attaches to the femur and the patella. The vastus lateralis along with the other quad muscles help to provide stability for the knee as well as absorbing forces from walking, running and jumping. The vastus lateralis is the biggest of the quadricep muscles. The primary function of the muscle is to help with squats, and going from sitting to standing.

Vastus Lateralis Injuries

The vastus lateralis is susceptible to concussions, strains, and tightness.


Vastus Lateralis

The Vastus Lateralus sits on the outside of the quad and has very little protection. If you play a contact sports like football or martial arts, it is very likely that you will take a blow to your quad that will cause a wound.


The vastus lateralis does a lot of work when you are running and jumping. Sometimes the muscle becomes overloaded and tears under the workload. Strains have three different grades with the third being the worst. A 1st-degree strain is when less than 10% of the fibers tear, and you can still walk just fine. A 2nd-degree tear is greater than 10% but not a complete tear. Walking is often tricky, and there is a significant amount of swelling. A 3rd-degree tear is when the muscles tear entirely and need surgery to heal.


The warning sign of a possible strain is muscle tightness. When the quads are tight, it creates a bunch of problems. The hamstrings have to work harder to fight the tight quads. Tight quads do not function at an optimal level due to trigger points and knots. What that means is that other quad muscles have to make up for the slack.

Vastus Lateralis Treatment

Vastus Lateralis

How do you treat the vastus lateralis when you are suffering from tightness, a wound or a strain?  The key to getting started is daily stretching. You do not want to let the quad develop tightness and trigger points. Stretching daily will help to improve flexibility and keep the muscle relaxed so it can perform at an optimal level.

Hip Stretch

  • The hips directly impact the quads
  • If you sit a lot and your hips get tight, your quads will soon be tight

Human Basket

  • Great stretch for the quads and the entire front side of the body
  • To increase the stretch on quads bend elbows

Wrestlers Bridge

  • Another great stretch for the front line of the body
  • Will stretch quads and all of the fascia connecting it to the hips, stomach and chest

Couch Stretch 

  • The best direct quad stretch that you can do
  • Key is to keep your glute flexed at all times to keep your pelvis from rotating

Treatment from a Professional for Your Vastus Lateralis

The best thing you can do for concussions, tightness, and strains is seen as a healthcare provider. The reason for seeing a professional is because they will put you on the best path to health. If you are an athlete, you do not have time to waste being hurt; you need to get back in the game. The worst thing you can do when you need to get back quickly is managed an injury yourself. You can end up making the injury worse and having to see a provider anyway.

Finding The Best Local Sports Medicine Providers For a Vastus Lateralis Injury.

Vastus Lateralis

9INE POINT Health is the best place to start your search for a health care provider to help you stay healthy. The key to success as an athlete is staying healthy and making sure the injuries are dealt with appropriately. Any athlete that runs is at risk of a vastus lateralis strain.

9INE POINT Health lets you search for providers by type and skill. For example, you can look for a Physical Therapist that knows the Active Release Technique. It does not matter what kind of provider you need, 9INE POINTHealth can help you find them and help you to sort through their skills.

If you are unsure where to start your journey, 9INE POINT Health will ask you questions and help you figure out the best starting place. All you have to do is answer a few questions. From there, 9INE POINT Health will connect you with the type of provider best suited for your needs. It does not matter if you are injured or doing everything you can to prevent a vastus lateralis injury.

The platform makes it easy . compare health providers as they are all given a 9INE POINT Number. Once you are shown the best local options, how do you know which is the best? Reading bios and reviews is just not enough because you need more than that.

Skill Sets to Look for In Sports Medicine Providers

Skill sets are the things healthcare providers learn after they graduate. A healthcare provider can take courses and get certifications for different skill sets. These skill sets are valuable and help them approach injuries from different perspectives so that you can get the best help at the right time for any Vastus Lateralis Issues.

KHO Health was acquired by was acquire by 9INE POINT in the summer of 2019 and is now referred to as 9INE POINT Health.

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