T Nation

Setting Up Training without Squatting


Hi everyone,

Earlier this summer I went to the doctor and was diagnosed with patellofemoral and told not to squat while I went through physical therapy. I did as suggested and worked a ton on flexibility. The good news is that the patellofemoral has gone away, but I think I may have some lasting damage to my knees so until I can go in and see the ortho, I am unable to squat. I moved away from 5/3/1 this summer to concentrate on the rehab exercises and stretching. I am now coming back and while I can't squat (or do anything heavy that involves deep knee flexion), I can deadlift. I was thinking of setting my program up like this

Deadlift 5/3/1
Gms 5x10

Cleans 5/3/1
Sldl 5x10

Any thoughts on the above?


I think you have the right idea. If you can’t squat, just hammer the shit out of the posterior chain with hip flexion.


I wonder if maybe a trap bar deadlift would could be of some use for a training cycle until you get the squat issue figured out.


Your doctor / PT said you can deadlift? It sounds like you need to strengthen your glutes and probably your hamstrings as well, perhaps improve hip mobility. This is something you can come back from but you’ll need to strengthen certain areas for sure.


Patellofemeral what? That’s just the name of a joint. What makes you think you have long term damage?