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Replacements for Squat & Deadlift During Knee Injury



Recently hurt my knee - Not bad enough to require surgery, but bad enough that I want to shy away from weighted exercises on it for a month or two. Any recommendations to keep size/strength during this time period? I’m planning on doing one leg leg presses with the uninjured limb, some bodyweight squats, and maybe seated good mornings along with hamstring curl machine. Would machine quad work shear the knee too much? Would you recommend just bodyweight rehab exercises for the leg? Any insight and tips is appreciated.


Can you do step ups?


Yes, steps ups are plausible. I’ll program those in.


Clear with your doctor/physical therapist before your knee explodes.

What exactly happened to your knee? Did you get a diagnosis?


I don’t think it’s in the potential to explode category. Came down on it weird playing flag football, heard a pop, no swelling, didn’t hurt for a few days then hurt bad for a day or two. I’d categorize it as a twinge now; 3/10 on the pain scale. I’m not planning on putting 405 on my back anytime soon, but I think some bodyweight/slow controlled movements will help it heal and avoid stiffness.


Well… not seeking medical / professional advice and/or a diagnosis is almost always a bad idea even if just for peace of mind.

Without a proper diagnosis coming up with treatment/management/rehab is foolish at best but since it’s not too serious you don’t need any of that anyway.

If it’s nothing srs then a month or two out is excessive. Avoid movements that aggravate pain while continuing movements that you are able to do until your symptoms subside and return gradually to full activity. Won’t lose much strength or ROM in a few weeks especially if you continue to lift as able.

Sounds unlikely that you’d have anything too srs going on. Still.

People do their ACL all the time with jumping twisting mechanism. I think there was one time a footballer was celebrating a goal too hard and injured himself lel. Pop and then since the ACL itself has no pain receptors it can be mostly painless and you can walk fine.

Other ligamentous injuries could be MCL or LCL or it could be related to the cartilage of the knee which could put you at risk of further degenerative joint disease down the line.

If it is more serious pls go see someone qualified to tell you it’s “not bad enough to require surgery” and go from there.


I was definitely planning to go get a consult if anything to just get some peace of mind. You’re right.

I’ve been doing bodyweight full ROM squats with no pain so I really don’t think its anything srs. I was initially really scared but I think what I was feeling was more soreness than anything.

I have heard horror stories about people not having pain or swelling but then going to the doctor and finding out their knee is exploded.

Scheduling an appointment, but in the meantime I think I’ll stick with hitting my off leg hard with leg press, doing some bodyweight squats, and doing some hip thrusts/ posterior chain work like KB swings