T Nation

Knee Pain When Squatting


Hey guys, I've been squatting for a while and I've recently sustained a knee injury on my right knee. I don't know what it is exactly but I know that it hurts when I bend it (Squat) and when I flex my leg out straight.

Do you guys have any advice on how I should treat this? I definitely want to squat again... I can barely do bodyweight squats without hurting at all currently.

Advice would be appreciated :slightly_smiling: Thanks guys


Does it hurt when you do a step up onto a bench??


Yes it does. When I walk up the staircase there is a mild pain too, not excruciating but there's a feeling of soreness.


Check out Kelly Starrett's blog post about knee tracking and stairs, its a fairly recent post.

Also, Boyle's joint by joint approach disctates that it is most likely either your ankle mobility or hip mobility. Either way, the pain is not associated with the knee but somewhere else. Film your squat and link it...


Ok I will look up these articles.

Any advice on how I should heal this injury for now? Is rest simply sufficient?


Is it swollen? How bad is the pain? Where exactly in the knee?


how long ago did you hurt it?? give it a few days / a week to get better... then try gently easing into things. if you still get stabby pains and / or weakness / instability then go see a doc and try and persuade them to give you an MRI so they can see if there is any soft tissue / bone damage.

you might have pulled / strained something a bit in which case hopefully it will come right. if it doesn't come right then things might be more serious, though.

do you ice it?? strap it??


Well its in the middle part of the knee (the right knee), and the pain is on the right side as well. It doesn't look swollen and the pain is bearable but definitely uncomfortable when I squat. I have no pain when I'm sitting down though

I've noticed it since last monday...which was 1 week and 3 days ago...so I'm hoping to rest for at most another 1 or 2 weeks? Really hope it'll be alright...


Pain in the knee rarely comes from the knee. Healing the swelling is done by icing

The only problem is that you have a dysfunction. Rest won't fix anything. Resting knee dominant movements will though. You need mobility.

Fix your hips and your ankles, and please tell me you foam roll before you workout!


No sorry I don't.... my gym has limited facilities and I thought I wouldn't really need one for the moment while doing SS.

Anyhow I'm willing to take advice, how should I foam roll to treat this?


Check out btbproject.wordpress.com . I go over foam rolling as well as rolling out on a baseball. Rolling, stretching and mobilizing might be all you need for better squat mechanics!


All right will check it out! Thanks!


Just some extra info, in case anyone else has other advice...

I did more research and I believe it hurts around and under my patella. Causes for this would probably be my squat form which had my knees going past my toes


If you could upload a squatting video of yours, that would be very careful.


knees coming past / in front of your toes isn't a problem. oly lifters do this all the time. your knees will come forwards as much as they need in order to keep you balanced. that is ok.

what is important, though, is that your knees get pushed out to the sides over your ankles instead of caving inwards.

take some vids of your squat. try and get front on and side on if possible. that way we can really see what your knees are up to.

i'm still worried about your knee pain when you do step-ups, though. if it were knee pain only when you were squatting then it would be more likely that something is seriously off with your squat form... still, you might have strained something a bit, i guess...


Yeah I think it's better to aim for your knees to travel not in line with the toes, but further out the the side of the feet. Doing this while walking up stairs helps to.

And as you say Alexus the knees can come forward over beyond the toes. I think once your knees are travelling in a healthy path, the most important thing is to focus on keeping a good back position. Focus on keeping the thoracic spine erect and strong, for example.

This video is helpful (Ithink someone above has already mentioned it). Well worth a watch:



yes! knees out!

you might discover muscles in the back / sides of your hips that you never thought you had.

you can practice them with step-ups, too.

and very important for your squats.

i'm just learning this for myself... micro-band around the knees really helps to cue the 'knees out!'

if you do this... do your knees still hurt??


Letting your knees come forward over your toes is fine and they all said, however if you already have knee pain it isn't a good idea. If your knees start to feel better try sitting back more.


Okay I will try to upload my squat sometime this week. Not sure if my gym allows photography but would a body squat be ok if I can't get a video of me with a bar?


a squats a squat!