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Old 08-18-2008, 01:59 PM   #2
Robert Callahan
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Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Zzyzx  CA
Posts: 1,626
Re: Training people with prior serious knee injuries

I have found the best thing for people with a history of pain/injuries is getting their strength up before anything else so that their joints have the support they need. So doing something like Starting Strength for at least 4-6 weeks just to get a base line strength and get them comfortable with the basic compound movements. I have had success with this approach with a 73 year old man with a full knee replacement and several back surgeries as well as a 23 year old athlete after an ACL replacement.

The most important thing to this approach though is to start light and work your way up. So begin with air squats, get them comfortable with that, then maybe a 10-15lb bar, slowly add weight and work your way up to a 45lb bar. If you do not have access to a 15lb bar, load up weight on a pvc or broom stick. If they cannot air squat, get a box behind them and have them sit down and stand up and mix that with partial squats as low as they can go.

Basically get them comfortable with the movement then slowly start ratcheting up the weight, it may take longer or shorter depending on the person but they will get stronger and thats what is important.

"I swear by my life and by my love of it that I will never live for the sake of another man, nor ask another man to live for mine"
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