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Friend with trashed knees

Posted: Thu Jan 08, 2015 9:57 pm
by KenDowns
A friend of mine is looking to start lifting. I gave him a routine that is basically the best of stronglifts and starting strength.

His doctor advises his knees will likely need to be replaced in the coming years, he is in late 40's. His physical therapist advises that he can lift but must modify the movements, and recommends Romanian DL, front squat, and Trap Bar moves. Previously he has told me the soft tissue (I don't what it's called) in the knee joint is all used up. Sorry, that's about all I know.

Since this is all 2nd-hand, that's about all I have, but it's a bit of a puzzler. Why would a PT say Romanians to somebody who does not even do regular deadlifts? Why front squats for bad knees? Trap bar I can sort of understand for back issues, and of course it's technically easier, but I still don't see the knee connection.

Re: Friend with trashed knees

Posted: Fri Jan 09, 2015 4:59 am
by Proper Knob
I don't understand front squats for bad knees. You'd want to do an exercise with less shearing force on the knee, like box squats. Personally it sounds like the PT doesn't really know what he/she is talking about.

Re: Friend with trashed knees

Posted: Fri Jan 09, 2015 8:40 am
by hoosegow
I can't believe I'm saying this, but I would not recommend any squat. From what you are describing, it sound like the cartilage is gone. This means the knee joint is bone on bone. If you place a load on the back and then squat, you are going to be doing more damage. I think, in this case, the more you use it the quicker the damage is done. Lifts where your knees don't rotate, to me, make more sense. I like the RDL suggestion and would add good mornings.

But then again, I'm just a dumbass.

Re: Friend with trashed knees

Posted: Mon Jan 12, 2015 8:18 am
by stuward
I remember a couple years ago someone in my gym doing a lot of cable exercises with the cable attached to his ankle. He was doing hip flexion, extention, adduction, abduction and I think he had a couple exercises for some of those. It seemed inefficient to me so I asked him about it. He said it was the only way to work all the hip movements without aggravating his knee injury. Just saying.