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 Post subject: Help me out please
PostPosted: Mon Feb 04, 2013 9:41 pm 
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My friend (yes it's really a friend) has decided to start working out with me to lose some weight. I've been lifting for a number of years and feel I have a good grasp on setting up a exercise routine to fit peoples goals thanks to this site. I used to post on here years ago but can't remember my username so I've created a new one. Anyways, back to my friend. Their knees hurt them when they do any type of squat motion. Whether it's squats, sled machine, leg press, lunges or step ups they say their knee pops and has a bit of pain to it. Even doing them with just body weight hurts. I've told them to stretch daily and they do before and after doing leg exercises but that hasn't helped much yet. They can do leg curls and extensions without hardly any pain and things like running, stair steppers, and ellipticals don't bother them either.

My question is, what kind of things could they do where they'd still use the entire leg but won't hurt them? I'm pretty much at a loss for this. I'm huge into squats and deads but have never had joint issues so don't know much about working around them. Would partial movements be better than nothing or just avoid them all together? They say the pain isn't excruciating but enough that doing 3-4 sets just isn't possible.

For a little background on the routine the person is a beginner doing a push/pull/lower/ab,cardio routine. Most exercises are 3-4 sets with 12-15 reps since main goal is weight loss.

If you've made it this far I will really appreciate any help you can give. Thanks for reading.


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 Post subject: Re: Help me out please
PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2013 2:07 am 
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Is he's form good? Or is it horrible before the pain hits? Is there huge compensation or lots of faulty and incorrect movement in the squat exercises?
I'd say he should see a physiotherapist. If you can't even perform foundamental movement patterns WITH bodyweigth, I think you shouldn't train at all. You should fix the problem first.

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 Post subject: Re: Help me out please
PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2013 5:43 am 
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I think he or she (or "they" as you put it) should have his or her meniscus fixed, then not have to worry about it.

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 Post subject: Re: Help me out please
PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2013 5:46 am 
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By the way, what do you think stretching will do for this? Stretching what?

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 Post subject: Re: Help me out please
PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2013 7:47 am 
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weak glutes/ankle mobility issues

fix these and all will be well


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 Post subject: Re: Help me out please
PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2013 9:47 am 
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Dub, form is fine which is why this has me a little puzzled. I've done a ton of reading on form for all lifts and lift with a mirror so I know I'm doing it right. I've even had them read up on it for a better understanding and their form is very good. I'm not really sure how practical seeing a doctor is right now for them but I'll bring it up.

Jungledoc, I'm going to google meniscus things right after submitting this post. And for the stretching, when I was younger about 10 yrs old (22 now) I dislocated a knee cap. The doctors told me to stretch regularly and start exercising my legs. Something to do with the quadriceps and hamstrings being imbalanced with one stronger than the other which might have led to the injury. I figured maybe this was the case with my friend so told them to start stretching a lot to loosen up the muscles and to start lifting since they were untrained previously. They have a desk job where they sit for 8 hours and I've read multiple studies about how sitting a lot tightens and shortens muscles. The stretching they're doing hits the whole leg with 4-5 stretches.

robertscott, I was hoping lifting would help strengthen the entire lower body and the pain would go away but it hasn't. What exercises would you suggest for glute work that wouldn't hurt the knee?


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 Post subject: Re: Help me out please
PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2013 9:52 am 
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I think the doc is right. Sounds like an injury to me.


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 Post subject: Re: Help me out please
PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2013 11:28 am 
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After doing some reading on the meniscus that does sound like what it could be. I doubt it's torn and if it is its very very minor. Everything I see says to ice, rest, and prop the knee for minor tears. Seeing how I'm not sure if it's torn would wearing a knee brace while exercising be a good idea? Or is there anything they could d o to exercise their legs? I'm sure the best response will be go to a doctor but like I said I'm not sure how practical that is for them right now.


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 Post subject: Re: Help me out please
PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2013 4:06 pm 
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Painful knee popping is almost always some degree of torn meniscus. Not sure how you can say that you doubt it's torn and that it's very minor. X-ray vision? Well, he or she can still move it, I spose maybe that makes it "minor". Braces or wrapping don't help. The problem is inside the joint space itself, so what you do to the outside won't affect it.

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 Post subject: Re: Help me out please
PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2013 4:08 pm 
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Oh, what you had as a kid was a patellar tracking problem. Strengthening the weak parts help that. Stretching not so much.

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 Post subject: Re: Help me out please
PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2013 7:21 pm 
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Thanks again Jungledoc for clearing things up. I only said it was minor because of the descriptions I read online and they're still able to walk, bend, and can squat without the pain being intolerable.


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 Post subject: Re: Help me out please
PostPosted: Wed Feb 06, 2013 2:59 am 
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It's one of those things that sometimes improves spontaneously, but usually not much or not permanently. If your friend has insurance getting it fixed is simple and really very safe (as surgery goes).

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