Olympic Hopeful

A mysterious pain threatened training for an Olympic hopeful from Shreveport.
Turns out the solution was simple.
Weight lifting got a strong hold on Kendrick Farris at eleven years old.
Now, eight years later, he lifts more than four hundred pounds and is touted as a sure pick to compete with the world's top athletes in the next Olympic games.
"He's number 4 in the U.S. Pound for pound and he's young. He's 19 years old so he's one of the youngest in that top group," says his coach Kyle Pierce.
"I look forward to competing in the Olympics. I'm going to keep working hard to try to get to that level," Kendrick says.
But a little over a year ago the sudden onset of a nagging pain started to slow him down.
"It was keeping me from squatting heavy and you need to squat heavy to keep your leg strength up in order to progress in other lifts," he says.
Dr. Shane Barton with the Willis knight on orthopedic and sports medicine center discovered inflammation of the tiny piriformis muscle was irritating the nearby sciatic nerve and causing Kendrick's hip pain.
"If you can imagine the entire leg is being controlled by this little muscles in a certain position and he was, I could make that muscle break with one finger." Dr. Barton says.
The number one treatment...physical therapy to stretch and strengthen the muscle.
With extensive testing and close monitoring of Kendrick's lifting technique physical therapist Johanna Powell found another problem.
Kendrick was flat footed so his stance while lifting was putting more stress on the piriformis muscle in his hip.
The simple solution...these arch support insoles...made a big difference.
"Oh man, it's been wonderful. I just put my insoles in whenever I get ready to squat and I don't feel any pain so obviously they've been working," says Kendrick.
He and his coach agree the sports medicine support is helping to lift him to a higher level in competition.
"You gotta be your best. You see how things are always determined on fractions of seconds .5 kilograms. It gets very competitive. He needs every edge he can get."
Kendrick has represented theU.S. in international competitions six times.
His next trip will be to China this spring.