View Full Version : If you can't, you must!

Joyce Behrendt
05-13-2007, 10:47 PM
I had torn my meniscus playing tennis about 3 years ago. I finally saw a surgeon about it a year after the injury. He said he could do some surgery to clean it up. He also counciled me to never do squats and lunges and that swimming was the best exercise. I chickened out of the surgery. He said "You'll be back".

I did some reading and found an article by Paul Chek. I continued to do squats and lunges and hiking. I don't have any pain now after 3 years. I wasn't sure about disobeying what the orthopedic surgeon said, but it seems to have worked for me. Of course, I limited my movement and didn't do anything that was painful. But now, I'm doing the New Rules of Lifting which includes rotational lunges, Bulgarian split squats and back squats.

Everyone should squat! I have told many of my patients with orthopedic injuries to their spine and legs, "If you can't, you must!" Over and over, I have seen workers and athletes get re-injured because they avoided developing strength in the squat pattern. As I have said before, it is the person who can't squat or got hurt squatting, then avoided it, who develops a weak wound repair and ends up re-injured!


Allen Yeh
05-14-2007, 05:29 AM
Good article and good for you!

Last year Mark Rippetoe had a good article in the Crossfit Journal talking about medical profressionals and fitness.

The New Rules of Lifting is a pretty good book, how much did the split squats suck when you first started doing them? They made me realize how weak I am on 1 leg.

Mike ODonnell
05-14-2007, 07:51 AM
They made me realize how weak I am on 1 leg.

I know Boyle is big on it...I am sure Check is too....but anyone who is athletic and playing sports needs 1 legged training in all directions....all planes of motion....as that is how the body works....or breaks down if not trained correctly....I like the "lunge around the clock" exercise....really shows your weak spots....

Robb Wolf
05-14-2007, 12:40 PM
I will do some looking to find the study but a study was performed several years ago in which individuals either had arthroscopy (cleaning up the knee) or a fake scope (incision on the outside, sutured closed...no arthroscopy) and at one year and three years the "fake" group had less knee pain and fewer complications.

If one has a torn ACL or a bone chip or something surgery might be of benefit. Most of it is bunk compared to smart rehab.

Joyce Behrendt
05-14-2007, 10:54 PM
I may have read that study, Robb, now that you mention it.

The one legged squats are hard -- feels like being punched in the stomach. But these have helped a lot with hiking when there are some steep rocks involved.

My trainer also had me do one legged stand ups from being seated on the bench. Also some kind of side lunge that uses one leg. I'm lucky to have a good trainer who makes me work hard and who takes her work seriously. Plus she plays disco for me -- especially Brick House by the Commodores. :)