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Hamstring Quads Imbalance?



when i tried a 15-rep squat program, my quads got huge and i easily gained 10 lbs over a month. But after a month i started to get knee pain. I think this might be due to quad/hamstring imbalance. the high-rep squat program worked wonders to me and i hope to utilize it again in the future. But how can i do so without causing further imbalance?

thanks in advance


I'm guessing you are using an olympic type squat so if you were to switch to a powerlifting type squat you would use your hamstrings alot more and take emphasis off the quads. Box squats as recommended by west side is the best for hamstring/glute developement. I also do romanian deadlifts, these really do target the hamstrings.


Withtout actually seeing you squat it is difficult to tell you what to do. First off, are you squatting with a full ROM ? And to add about the whole "olympic squats just work the quads blabla" thing, olympic squats work the entire legs, they work the hams/glutes a lot. If you get knee pain from squatting you're probably not squatting correctly. I rarely saw quad/ham imbalance in full squatter.
Add some RDL and full squats to the mix and you should be fine to counter that imbalance.


It is very unlikely you developed an imbalance big enough to cause knee pain in a month. It is more likely that you are not doing full squats or are using incorrect form and thus you are putting a lot of pressure on your knee and have begun to damage it.


I'm going to have to agree that it would be difficult to develop an imbalance over such a short training period.


I had the same problem, however instead of doing 15 rep squats i was doing a 5x5 squat, bench and deadlift workout and no direct hamstring work, i got a knee injury with olympic squating, the orthopedic doc. suggested imbalances in lateral and medialis heads of the quads and also weak hams.

About 6 weeks later i was able to perform squats again due to the excruciating knee pain. m rehab work consisted of stiff deads, leg curls and lunges, and as far as the imbalance in the quads i used a foam roller and now my knees are pain free...


Great advice above I cant see this causing a huge imbalance either but dont ignore the assistance work much of which was stated above ill just throw in a vote for Heavy GM's as well.



DISCLAIMER: I'm not a doctor nor am I making any kind of prognosis.

I had the same problem. I went to the orthopedics and they called it "Patella Femoral Syndrome".

The way they explained it is my hamstrings were to tight, thus pulling my quads tighter...thats the imbalance.



What should one do then? I have the same problem in my knee from squatting.



The ortho doc said to stretch and do lots of reps w/low weights. She really stressed the stretching.


stretch what? the hams?

how does one strengthen the VMO?


How do you deadlift without the hammies playing a major role?


Can somebody link a video where its a 90 degree( not full squat) that's easy on the knees? I need to know stance width and foot position.


The only time I ever feel anything in my knees if I dont push from my heels.


DanErickson, thats probably just a funny coincidence :stuck_out_tongue:


Hmmm.... I wonder if the OP learned to squat properly or had his knees explode.