T Nation

Knee Joints

Hi, I am a relatively new poster and was hoping someone could give me some more info on the problems with my knee joints.

Before I even started doing squats and deadlifts (i know, i wasnt really lifting until i started…) my right leg was significantly smaller (about an inch less around) than my left, and my right foot tended to pronate outwards more so than my left.

My mom happens to be a doctor, and one day when I went to take her out to lunch I had my knee got checked out by her physical therapist friend. She told me I had a congenital knee problem and that my joints rubbed when I went down past about a half squat. She also told me, that my right lower leg is a bit shorter than my left, which I think is the reason for the difference in size between my limbs. She also said some things about an anteriorly rotated pelvis and something about my right shoulder too.

Anyways she told me not to squat low, or to only squat as low as it didnt hurt, otherwise I would be damaging my knees. But this was a little more than a year ago, and since then i have done many pull type stuff (deadlifts/olympic lifts) and even a good amount of squats. If I squat powerlifting style (yes I go past parallel) and my knees don’t come much over my toes I don’t seem to have any pain (pain usually occurs next day if I did something wrong), although I have been feeling some pain after doing snatches, or sometimes powercleans… nearly anytime my knees are bent and the weight isnt all on my heels I seem to get a bit of pain the next day in my knees when trying to explod off stairs, or especially if I try body weight squats.

So what I am asking from for you guys is recommendations on excersizes that may strengthen my VMO, especially unilateral ones… but it is hard to go low on unilaterals without having your knee come past your toes, which might be doing more damage than good.

I am just a kid (19) and havent been training very long so I really want to take care of my knees for the long haul. Would glucosamine/chronditon be good? I did some research here, but it was kind of mixed opinions… maybe with just chronditon being recommeneded, not too sure and would appreciate feedback on this too.

I’m about 5’10", 160 lbs
Not to sure about my maxes in things, and don’t want to speculate either… lets just peg me as a beginner (1-2 years in the gym)

Thanks in advance, please ask me questions if I need to clarify things… I could really use the help guys, don’t let this kid mess up his knees!

Here ya go boss:


As well, it would be good to be thoroughly evaluated by a knowledgeable PT or chiro to determine if you have a true leg length discrepancy. If not, the Neanderthal No More program would be great for getting you back into alignment before getting to aggressive with your training. It will be much easier to clean up these imbalances sooner than later. As Ian says “Little leopards grow into big leopards, and big leopards kill.”

Stay strong

VM - wall squats (swiss ball b/n your back and wall) with 1kg medicine ball between your knees. Squat from 0 degrees (full knee extension) to 30, which is the activation range for the VM.

If you choose to see an AT or PT, they’ll probably use muscle stim in conjunction with this ex. You can also tap the muscle as you do extensions or singe leg press to improve stimulation.

Walk backwards on an inclined treadmill, it will force you to work constantly through the 0-30 range.

You’ll have teardrops in no time buddy… But start small and try the treadmill first, see how you feel the next day. If you feel like someone put a drill to your quad, stick with it for a while before moving on.

Awesome, these replies are just what I was looking for. Great tips, especially the specific excersizes for the VMO. I will be sure to get to a PT or chiro soon to get a full analysis.

One last quick question:
I don’t have any severe lingering pain after I work out, and the times that I do feel sore in my joints the next day; it is only when I try to feel the pain by testing out certain movements I know aggravate it. Do you think I should stop doing leg work for now (please don’t say that because I can’t stop), or just be very aware of my knees and any (negative) responses they give me after training. Are joint supplements worth my time?

Thanks for all your help.

One thing I do with my knee patients with knee pain is McConnel tape before exercising…all those exercises everyone mentioned are great, one thing u could do at home is roll up a towel, place it under your knee and contract your quad down into the towel, really easy and u can do about 50, hold each contraction 5 seconds…