T Nation

Advice on Biomechanics Following Skeletal Injury


First up, I’m a bit of a noob and this is a bit long winded. I’ve been doing some weights for a little while but I’ve a hell of a lot to learn. Prior to the injury I expand upon below I’d been very fit, but not lifted at all really. I’d been a martial artist and was on the national panel so exercise was primarily body weight and cardio. I came to weights as an alternative training method simply because my knee injury meant I could no longer do Taekwondo. I surprised myself in that I really enjoyed it, both the challenge and the intellectual aspect to it, it’s far from simple!

My issue is one of injury and biomechanics, a number of years ago I had a serious car accident and suffered a crushed tibial plateau and a compound open fracture of my femur. Both on the left leg. As a result my left leg is now just over half an inch shorter than my right, although nobody can say how much it was shortened by definitively because one leg is always shorter than the other. I was though very fortunate that the tibial plateau has not really affected the range of motion in my knee, a very rare occurrence I’m told.

The question relates specifically to the squat. I wear a corrective insert in my shoe to lessen the impact on my lower back as a result of the imbalance, not a perfect solution but it’s what I’ve got.

While this serves to ensure my pelvic region is as level as possible when I squat my femurs are, of course, still a different length and as a result of the corrective insert, so is my lower leg. My knees look all over the place if that makes sense. This isn’t the most stable looking position.

The question then is, can I set up differently or better? Should I be squatting? Should I ditch the insert? Is there an alternative that I should explore? This isn’t the kind of stuff that local PTs can advise me on so I’m asking here in the hope that someone with the knowledge can help.

For the record any advice you might offer would be just that, advice. It would be my decision and mine alone to act upon it or not.

Thanks in advance.