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Sore right knee??


I just started working out with my brother in law who is 260 pounds and has high body fat %. He has not worked out in years. On Sunday we did chest and bi's and he is really sore today(Tuesday) and could not work out. He has a sore right knee which he thinks he will not be able to squat and do deads. My question is how do I convince him to do these important movements to build up strength is his legs. Will the additional strength help reduce the soreness in his knee?? BTW I am not really sure what is wrong with his knee, all I know is that he is worried about doing these movements.

Aside from deads and squats is there any other movements he could do to build up the strength first to help him do deads and squata or should he just dive right into these movements with light weight and high reps???

BTW I also have some soreness in my right knee and my elbow but I just suck it up and work through it, as my goal is to lose BF and gain strength and I figure that the soreness in my knee with decrease as my BF and weight decrease. Am I wrong in that assumption.

Thanks in advance. Boom #80


I would take a look at his water intake. Is he getting enough? I notice some joint pain when I'm a bit dry. The extra weight he's packing probably doesn't help. Fat people usually have some knee problems. If he's new to working out he just might be wussing out.

I also get sore in my elbows and left knee after doing power cleans but that doesn't mean I'm going to stop doing them! Way too much fun. I think its just a flexibility issue with my elbows.

If he's just being a pansy show him a guest Atomic dog by Chris Shugart. Maybe "Set Yourself on Fire"

In faith, Billy


Before making the assumption that he is just wussing out (as he might be) it would probably be a good idea to have his knee looked at by a doc/physio. If the end result is nothing then you would probably have an easier time convincing him to do the movements.

As a side note, you can't expect a beginner to train along side you at the same intensity. I personally find this holds back my workouts and detracts from the beginners desire to train. An advanced program can really be painful for a newbie trainer.


Kinetix is on the money. You might also consider that he is 260 pounds with very little muscle. In other words, try strapping 50-60 pounds to your back and walking around all day without any new muscle to compensate for it; your knees would probably be sore, too. Orthopedic problems are very common in the obese. I'm willing to bet that just gradually reducing his body fat will help immensely. Stay away from high impact work (e.g. treadmills, lunges) in the meantime.


Thanks for the replies so far. My feeling WITHOUT any knowledge if there is any medical problem with his knee is that he is wussing out, as mentioned. I too feel that dropping the pounds will help his knee problems, but how do I convince him to try these out and work through the pain, as long as it is not tooooo painful. What about building up his leg muscle, will that also help???


If he's obviously nervous about the squats and the deads, back off them a bit. There's plenty of time to add them in later. Right now, focus on getting him moving and establishing some good habits.

Right now he probably does not have much confidence in his body and strength levels. When he loses weight and gains strength (and right now, just about anything will gain him strength), he will naturally become more intrepid in the gym. But don't scare him off. Save the more "hardcore" movements for th new year.


Pain is usually the body's way of telling you something is wrong. Being a novice trainer your friend probably hasn't learned to distinguish between good (muscle) pain and bad (joint) pain. However, it probably isn't your place to assume that he's just being a wuss. After all, wouldn't you feel bad if you made him push through only to find out later that there really was a problem? Then he'd be out of training for a while (if not permanently). If I'm wrong in this case, then even better. If his knee turns out fine you can proceed KNOWING that everything is safe instead of assuming.


if he has been sitting a lot, he may have developed pfs. this can be worked passed and eventually do squats, but not yet if he has it. other exercises are going to have to be done to get to that point, so have him get it checked out first to prevent a possibly horrible injury.


Boom your brother in law did not become obese because he is an industrious guy.

Granted he may be telling the truth regarding knee pain. No way I can tell for sure from here. However, I suspect he is lying in order to get out of the hard stuff!

"The body becomes its function"

Your brother in law is fat and most likely lazy. I bet he has bad breath as well.


I think I will go with what Lisa said and start him on some other exercises and build him up to deads and squats. My only fear is that people I see often get comfortable with lat pull downs, leg extensions, etc and never adapt to deads and squats, where as if he started with them he would get use to the other movements. Just a thought.

BTW Zeb, no he does not have stinky breath. Yes is he is lazy, as he has let himslef reach this stage.

I am also going to print off the article that Billy recommended. Thanks