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Knee Pain from Squats. Help?


Would really appreciate some knowledgeable advice. My knees ( mostly right) are always stiff and painful. It doesn’t feel like anything is torn, pretty much feels like my knees are 80 years old ( I’m 29 ). Very stiff and tender and painful if I don’t do a ton of warming up before any low body exercise. The pain mostly feels like it comes from beneath the knee caps. I squat with flat soled shoes, and stay fairly upright when I squat, my bar path is good now but used to be terrible ( too far foreword ).

Any suggestions on how to treat this? Ice or heat? Foam roll? Stretch ? Change squat mechanics?



You might try some joint health supplementation such as glucosamine and chondroitin. I took it for a while and it seemed to help a little, but my problem was my squat. A guy at the gym offered me some advice and filmed my squat from the side for me. I had one of those good morning/ accordion style beginner squats and I had a tendency to cave my knees in a bit so changing my squat mechanics was the answer for me. I changed to high bar with oly shoes and haven’t had knee pain since. I also use knee sleeves.
It’s hard to recommend changing squat mechanics without seeing your actual squat. Video it from a couple different angles and see what you think.


@mackison hit it right on the head.

What kind of training program are you using? Could be a recovery issue or possibly diet related if you eat like shit


Thanks for replying. I do 531 and eat mostly whole foods. Kind of confused if I should high bar or low bar squat. I have a video of me squatting but don’t know how to upload it here. The same amount of weight feels light on my back high bar and feels like a ton on my back when I go low bar. Have started taking glucosamine and chondroitin hopefully that will help after a couple of months.


How long you been doing 5/3/1? How many days/week? What other lifts? A squat video would help.

You may need to just give it some rest.


Do supplemental work (leg presses, Romanian DLs).
So 2 sessions of SW and one run session a week till the pain goes away.
Running will help.
If you can’t, try stairmaster or the stairs. Big steps.
Icing and none of the above will help.
Not even foam rolling.
The joint has taken a beating and the soft tissues are all messed up.
Re-train them with a revised volume and a proper training program.
If all else fails, take 2 weeks off.

I have this pain occasionally while training 6x a week olyw style and the only modification to my routine was to change to power variants and cut out squats.

It’ll get stronger and it’ll pass you have to wait it out.


531 for about a year now. 4 days per week. I do front squats for accessory on deadlift day and good mornings on squat day, along with some other supplemental work like leg curls, leg extension, lunges and ab work. Thanks for all the replies, I’ve tried to upload video but it says it isn’t a supported file or something.

WI’ll try your advice


I would not do leg extensions . Lunges can bother people too. Other than that fish oil. It has been shown to work .


Hey man this sounds familiar
If you were to drop into a deep bodyweight squat without a warmup or support how would it feel? Like your kneecap is on fire? Like someone is trying to pry it off with a crowbar?