T Nation

These damn knees!!!!!


Hey all...I've been having knee issues ever since my new job that has me at a desk for eight hours. Well upon talking with the people of the forum as well as my ART practitioner, it appeared to be patellofemoral syndrome. The pain was on both sides (medially) of the knees. Well I've basically gotten rid of that, but now a new problem rears its ugly head.

Now I have a stiff, dull achy pain above both kneecaps that is especially noticeable when I stand up from a seated position. I even had to cut my squat workout short this evening...not good. Any suggestions as to what the hell is going on? Is it tied into PFS? I've been stretching like a madman for a good ten days now and I may schedule another ART session tomorrow.

This is extremely frustrating as I've been making awesome progress since my layoff and now I have all this to contend with.

Thanks for any advice!


That's rough man. It's the inactivity. I can't drive more than 6 hours without pain in my knees. Thats the only time they bug me though. No advice, but sympathy if you want it.


LOL...I'll take anything I can get right now =)


Watch as I pat myself on the back for guessing right in your last thread.

The issue here is having your knees bent for extended periods. If you can prop them up on something under your desk at work, that would help a great deal.

In addition:

-Lay off the leg work for three or four weeks. Seriously. Ice them down at home for 30 minutes to combat pain.

-Buy arch supports.

-Wear light elastic knee wraps under your pants.

-These boring exercises may help "take pressure off the kneecap." You may notice that none of them place direct stress on knee extension. This is important.



Its easy to say that its just him sitting for extended periods. Thats part of the symptoms, not part of the problem. Get your ART guy to really dig into your rectus femoris and the rest of your quads. mine tried about ten different things with my knee(i had the same problem over a year ago, totally gone now)until he figured out it was my hip flexors that were messing up my patella.


As opposed to something more difficult to say? Like "go get ART", the generic recommendation of every other fucking thread?

This is SPECIFIC advice collected from a a variety of sources to alleviate the pain that accompanies this problem, and perhaps even solve it outright. Whether it proves useful is not your decision to make.



THis is specific information. I tried a million things and this got rid of it for good. If it took a ART instructor 4 trips to even figure out what it was, then how do you think someone with not near the expertise is going to be able to fix it? When i get hurt, I want the problem fixed, not the symptoms lessened.


And i tried all that you mentioned. None of it worked at all.


Well I have to be honest...it would be VERY, VERY DIFFICULT (if not impossible) to lay off all lower body work for a month unless it is absolutely necessary. I'm going to ART tonight and I will make sure he emphasizes those problem areas. If I have to lay off squats for a spell then so be it, but I don't see why I couldn't do hamstring/lower back/calf work as well as trying to strengthen the VMO since this is supposedly a big part of why I'm suffering in the first place.


Wow, I am glad I landed on to this thread.

I have been expiriencing similar pain as of late and my physiotherapist has given me the same diagnosis and similar excercises.

My question to everyone who has been diagnosed with this is, did any of you ever get a sharp, workout terminating pain when doing squats or DL's? usually at or near the bottom causing you to let go of the weight?

I'm just somewhat skeptical of the diagnosis I was given tis all...


oh by the way, thanks knightRT for the info. :wink:

Do you think that these excersises will help knee stability for squating?

I want to be rid of my knee problems so I can keep squating!

...then maybe people will stop chasing after with their frying pans trying to cook my "chicken legs"



Just got back from ART. I had some serious tightness and some adhesions in the rectus femoris. An interesting note: in addition to the ART, my chiropractor also did some accupuncture too which I've never had done before.

Kieran, I'll tell you the same thing my chiropractor told me: STRETCH, STRETCH, STRETCH!!!


How's everyone's patellofemoral problems doing??

I suspect it's what I have, and I went to my physio guy who just threw me a pamphlet with a program called an explosive drop squat. Basically you hold some dumbells and squat down a quarter of the way lightning fast, then hold it for a few seconds before coming back up.

Some of my leg days are good where I can squat nice and deep and do some great loads, and some of them are not so good where I feel like my knee is going to puncture through my skin.

But whenever I climb any stairs, both my knees make a sickening popping/grinding noise that makes me wanna puke.

Based on the above suggestions, I should try and find an ART clinic up here in Cold Calgary..:slight_smile:


My knees are doing pretty well. The biggest thing has been taking a nice long warm up on leg days. Stretching, followed by a bike warm up, followed by a series of warm up sets on either squats or dl's.

Also, I believe that my squat technique was largely to blame.
Everything seems to be ok now except when I tried really heavy 1/4 squats. My knees have a tendency to collapse when I?m really going for it...


I know the knee pain issues :frowning:

Except my knee pain is from arthritis in my skeleton, which I had since the age of three.

Don't ask me how I got it, all I know is that I couldn't walk for a year until after doing shit loads of physio-exercises to build up muscles (can't exactly make a three year old squat...).

Anyways, just sharing and saying that I know how all of you feel too.


Well I guess I'll chime in. From personal experience, these pains are an ongoing problem. The exercises and stretches do help. And the link is correct - this pain is definitely caused by inbalances in muscle tension/ flexibility. From experience I have found that the way to minimize this problem is to gently stretch the quads and hip flexors as often as possible. Before doing a squat workout, I always do a few sets on the hip aductor and abductor machines - they may be girly machines but they help stablize the knee laterally. I also find that It best after a couple of leg workouts to take ten - 14 days off any heavy leg work. These are my own personal findings.


E, I would highly recommend the ART if you can get to a good provider. I have had zero, absolutely zero, knee issues for a few weeks now. I did 3-4 ART sessions with great success, but you have to do a little work on the side as well.

Stretch like a madman, which your provider will tell you to do anyway. Since I sit at a desk for 50 hours a week, I stretch every time I get up to go to the restroom. The one that helps me the most is the "Three-step hip flexor stretch" that Poliquin talked about in a previous Question of Strength column (Issue 57). Also Ian King's hip flexor stretch from the Lazy Man's guide to stretching as well as lying on a high bench or table, pulling one knee to the chest and letting the other one hang off the table while having a partner push down on it slightly. You might need to work other areas as well (IT band, TFL, hammies etc) but your provider will be able to tell you where your issues lie. For me, it was largely in the hip flexors.

Glucosamine/chondroitin helped as well. Just finished up a six-week cycle of it.