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Author Topic: squats, are they bad or good for the knee? VMO issues  (Read 3809 times)

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Offline adi84_g

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squats, are they bad or good for the knee? VMO issues
« on: February 18, 2013, 09:29:36 AM »
Some say they are bad and others that are good, but have to be done the right way.

Had both knees operated, left for torn ACL and the right one for osteocondritis disecans almost two years ago.

Squating helped me gain power and balance.
The left knee is more an more powerfull, but the right one is developing at a slower rate and there is a big difference between the developement in the quad groups.The VMO is underdeveloped compared to the left knee but the other muscles of the quad are overdeveloped (if such can be said).Clearly there is an imbalance.I'm almost sure the patella is doing some traction there, because of the sound when I bend and extend the knee and when I walk.

I've been doing squats, reverse squats, single leg squats, wall squats, terminal knee extensions but the vmo is almost inexistent.

Should I keep doing the squats?Can they agravate the discomfort that I have in the right knee?

Thanks.

Offline Kaputt_Knee

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Re: squats, are they bad or good for the knee? VMO issues
« Reply #1 on: February 18, 2013, 10:46:14 AM »
I think squats are useful but you need to have your form regularly checked by someone who really understands the problems associated with your condition. Perhaps looking for a sport injury specialist trainer will help you identify the weaknesses and give you some ideas for building up all the areas where there are deficits. Often it is more than one obvious area that causes the problems, e.g VM plus ab/adductors and glutes being imbalanced.

Trying to develop the VMO in isolation is nigh on impossible, believe me I've tried over the years. I use resistance bands in an unloaded sense (seated or standing on the other leg) to actually get the VM to fire, but the only good thing I've found for strengthening that does not cause me problems is cycling. I use both a stationary bike and an outside one (when the weather permits it).

Very deep squats (where the thigh goes beyond horizontal) are not good. Perhaps using more lunge type exercises will be better. I use those and also the gripping of a small foot/volleyball between the knees seems to activate the VM.

Sue  ;)
1989 big trauma R. knee - sorted
1990-2004 3ACL recons and 20+ arthroscopies -RK
3/06 LK ACL torn!
4/06 ACL recon, kneecap broken
09 &10/06- 2x meniscus trims
3/07 - Notch Plastic & Lateral Release
14/8/08 complete revision ACL plus LCL/PLC recon
6/2/09 returned to skiing! Whoopee

Offline Lottiefox

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Re: squats, are they bad or good for the knee? VMO issues
« Reply #2 on: February 18, 2013, 02:36:03 PM »
I agree with Sue - squats done with good form can be useful. So many people run into problems because they don't use the hamstrings and glutes to drive upwards from their squat or else have a stance that leans forwards and stresses the knees, or their knees cave inwards etc etc.... 4 years ago my squats were hideous. Now I can deadlift 65kg Ii'm 62kg myself) and squat with good form. Deep squats are indeed not good for those with dodgy knees. Lunges aren't great for me but I have patella problems so I vary the motion and use transverse static or very controlled lunge actions, often with a light med ball for control and motion. I too find cycling to be good  and its brought me some VMO action back. Mini one legged dips with a resistance band too - tied around a table leg, with little controlled dips and a focus on the VMO helped me.

Lottie  :)
Bilateral patella OA since 2009, no surgeries.
Euflexxa working well x3 to current
Right forefoot CRPS post fusion surgery 2011
Refusing to let the ailing parts stop me....

Offline adi84_g

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Re: squats, are they bad or good for the knee? VMO issues
« Reply #3 on: February 18, 2013, 04:16:42 PM »
Thanks for the answers.
I've just scheduled myself for a PT session on Thursday.

About cycling...do you increase the resistence or you maintain a low resistence all the way?

I play table tennis two times a week.Should I use a knee brace for patella stabilization?

Adi

Offline Kaputt_Knee

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Re: squats, are they bad or good for the knee? VMO issues
« Reply #4 on: February 18, 2013, 05:07:22 PM »
Quote
I play table tennis two times a week.Should I use a knee brace for patella stabilization?
The only person who can answer that is your doctor or perhaps the PT.

I vary the resistence on my stationary bike - I start with a low resistence and high reps to warm up, then go high resistence for 10 minutes max before returning to low resistence/high reps to warm down.

While outside I maintain the gearing so that I do not have to stand on the pedals. But I live in the Bavarian Alps, so sometimes I actually have to get off and push the damned thing too!  ;) ;D
1989 big trauma R. knee - sorted
1990-2004 3ACL recons and 20+ arthroscopies -RK
3/06 LK ACL torn!
4/06 ACL recon, kneecap broken
09 &10/06- 2x meniscus trims
3/07 - Notch Plastic & Lateral Release
14/8/08 complete revision ACL plus LCL/PLC recon
6/2/09 returned to skiing! Whoopee

Offline adi84_g

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Re: squats, are they bad or good for the knee? VMO issues
« Reply #5 on: February 20, 2013, 07:59:54 AM »
Thanks Sue.

Could you describe your cycling program.How much km at ride and how many times a week?
Just want to make an ideea.
I always have the tendancy to exagerate.

Thanks.

Offline Kaputt_Knee

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Re: squats, are they bad or good for the knee? VMO issues
« Reply #6 on: February 20, 2013, 09:24:46 AM »
I try and use my exercise bike every day for at least 30 minutes. But I am working away from home a lot (3 days a week in a hotel), so it is not as regular as I would like. Away from home I use a piece of equipment recommended to me by another Knee Geek called a Gymstick.

Currently I do not cycle outside as we are still in deep snowy winter here, so I go skiing. I ski on average 2 to 3 days a week for 3/4 months each year. I also ski on the glaciers in the summer months. The high altitude training is good aerobic training as well.

In summer I ride my bike whenever I can doing at least 20 kms which is hard work in the mountains. When I go to flatter trails I try to do longer rides, but I'm restricted in that by the weather and having to always return to my car. I'm looking at completing the Inn-Danube Cycle path from Innsbruck to Vienna in the not too distant future. I would need probably 3 weeks of continuous riding to do it comfortably though. I use a city trekker bike not a high-tech mountain bike or road racer. The hybrid trekker suits the terrain I prefer to ride. I like cycling around Chiemsee which is not too far from my home - the cycle route is said to be about 180kms but I'm not so sure it is as long as that. If I get tired I get off and catch one of the ferries back to where my car is parked! I'm not fanatical about any thing other than skiing to be honest! And at my age and injury level, I'm going easier on that these days as well.  ;D

Sue  ;)

1989 big trauma R. knee - sorted
1990-2004 3ACL recons and 20+ arthroscopies -RK
3/06 LK ACL torn!
4/06 ACL recon, kneecap broken
09 &10/06- 2x meniscus trims
3/07 - Notch Plastic & Lateral Release
14/8/08 complete revision ACL plus LCL/PLC recon
6/2/09 returned to skiing! Whoopee