T Nation

Making Knees and Ankles Bigger?

Hi All

I’m am currently in the process of packing on Bulk.
17 weeks ago i decided to change my appearance. I weighed 127 lbs (9st 1) and now I weigh 165lbs (11st 10). Mostly muscle but obviously I have a nice spare tyre around my gut at the moment, which is to be expected. just for record im 5.8 in height

I only have a barbell and dumbell (no bench) and do all my workouts at home.

Now after the brief history it’s time to tell you my problem. Where i was a such a skinny runt beforehand despite bulking my knees and ankles are stick thin. Is there anyway i can make these bigger - i’m not even sure there are muscles on the knee and ankle but after reading this site for a few weeks now i know that someone on here will know the answer if there is one.

how old are you?

28yr olds,

i know i’m still quite small but i’ve never really had the will power to do anything about it till now, but i’m old enough now where my body won’t develop unless i make it.

There are muscles on the sides of the knees as well as above and below of course. You should be able to make a visible difference there if you work your legs properly. The ankle is primarily tendons though, I doubt you could make a real visual change in that area.

Congrats on the bulk. That’s over 2lbs a week. Without B&A pics I can’t know how much is fat but at least you’re not 127lbs anymore.

Look into Ripptoe’s Starting Strength program. It’s great for those with limited equipment. Try and get a cheap bench on Ebay or Craig’s List. Set up a chin-up bar and you’ll have all you need to workout at home.

Almost forgot, Welcome to T-Nation!

thanks kruiser, i will look into it. and it’s nice to be here.

obviously without the bench i’m only doing squats, stiff legged deadlift and some calf raises any other suggestions on good leg exercises, ie side of knee muscles.

hi kruiser,

just checked out riptoes program and i’ve kinda incorporated all that in my program already apart from the bench press - hence no bench.

whilst your here, can i pick your brain further - any ideas on exercises for the chest without a bench, it is developing but a lot slower than the rest.

Try floor press until you can get a bench.

cheers dax, i’ll give it a go.

My knees have gotten pretty big (or at least they appear that way) over the last couple of months, and I’m pretty sure it’s from ATG (ass to grass) front squats.

Front squatting however is a bit of a problem, if you don’t have a rack or is unable to clean the barbell. Lack of hip mobility might interfere as well. An old trick is to put ‘something’, like a piece of wood, under your heel, allowing you to go deeper. If you look at olympic weightlifters you’ll notice that their shoes have a built up heel.



Check out p. 25 of Dan Johns “From the Ground Up!” at http://danjohn.org/bp.pdf in regards to a cheap rack.

As for the chest, I’m out of my lane, but try looking into dips.


Thanks for the advice, i’ve only being doing regular squats, just changing the width of my stance so i’ll give front squats a try and see how i get on.

I’ve had some good advice so far. Now i’m enjoying trying to bulk I find myself trying to soak up as much advice as i can from this site.

If you’re going for appearance, I would think small joints are actually much better as they can make the muscles surrounding the joints look larger than they really are or compared to a larger joint individual.

Not sure how it actually affects the wear and tear of the joints, but this can mostly be avoided with proper warmup/exercise selection.

In terms of muscle around the joints (quads mainly), you can do the ATG squats, they really help with that softball medialis.

joints will never change drastically in size, but the tendons that cross them will grow in time, especially with consistent high frequency work. my wrists have gotten noticeably thicker over the last few years because the flexor tendons have thickened up from daily manual labor as well as lifting

i wouldnt recomend raising your heels for squatting, thats how i first fuckd my knee up cos it puts the weight too far forward. its best to improve flexiblity to be able to squat properly. as you train at home, try squating down as far as you can and hold this position to feel th stretch, i found this helped me alot

thanks guys lots of good advice so far.

I’m so… confused… by the titleee…

Yea the advice u got is great. I have big ankles, and i wish they were a bit smaller to show my calves more, so ur lucky u have a combination of good calves and a small ankle. Knees, what the other ppl said about ATG would be good.

Not sure if someone posted this but I see small joints as a benefit if you’re into bodybuilding. It makes your muscles look even bigger. It’s all about the appearance of having big muscles.


Thanks, well at the moment i’m not so lucky with my calves, for years i was a long distance runner but now i’m bulking it will take a lot of work, i have long slender calves not the slabs of steak bulging that i want. i’m sure i’ll get there eventually.


i’ve never looked at it like that, i suppose because i’m such a beginner i wanted to look big all over but i imagine if I keep it up it may work in my favour having small joints