I'm writing this in the hope that one of you will have had a similar experience, and/or might know of a way to work around this.
My situation: I have a home gym that's no more than a rack, some plates, and a pulley station in case I want to do some cable work. Mostly I do chin-ups, presses, squats, etc.
I decided to give Poliquin's "Advanced German Volume Training" a whirl a few weeks ago and I'm loving it. My knees, however, are giving me grief.
I've always had to be careful with them. If I back squat much over 200 lbs with a narrow stance, my knees scream at me for days. Wide-stance/sumo squats to parallel have always been pain free, however, and allowed me to work well beyond that limit. Front squats allow a narrower stance and deeper squat without the grinding and pain.
The last couple weeks, however, my knees burn when I'm squatting, and the right one makes a bloody uholy gritty, grinding sound... like there's sand in the joint. It's loud and nasty. While it's uncomfortable, it's not yet painful. Last night I couldn't even finish my workout; the burn in the knees got bad, and it went from discomfort to ache... and I was only up around 300 lbs for my reps.
Have any of you dealt with this? If I'm going into the doc, I'd like to go with some foreknowledge of possibilities so that I'm not flying blind.
I'm also wondering if neoprene sleeves would help this problem. Do any of you use them? If so, are there any brands that stand out above the others? And what the Hell is the difference between those with the open and closed patella?