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Exercises Movements, technique & proper execution

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Old 10-25-2006, 07:16 AM   #1
Aaron Graham
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Hi all

Was speaking to a physio regrading squat depth, i may be wrong in this (my memory is crap) but she was saying that a squat past 90 degrees is dangerous to your knees, im referring to weighted squats here not air squats.

I will need to ask her where the evidence is for this, she says there has been tests done and the pressure on the knee is huge when when going past that depth.

I have always been told to go quite deep for squats but she has me wondering if im doing it right, my knees aren't healthy at the best of times and i don't want to make it worse.

Also i mentioned arse to heels air squats and she was a bit concerned with them as well.

What do you guys think?, any one got concrete evidence on this one, any research material that proves/disproves this one??

I would like to improve my squats but i want to do it safely.

Thanks guys

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Old 10-25-2006, 07:39 AM   #2
David Aguasca
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well...she was wrong, pretty much.

i don't have the articles/scientific evidence to back this up, but there is tons of anecdotal evidence: every olympic lifter out there squats WELL past 90 degrees, with lots of weight...and their knees are fine.

sorry, again, no scientific evidence. but i feel like that much anecdotal evidence is good enough for me in this case.
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Old 10-25-2006, 07:48 AM   #3
Mike ODonnell
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Yep...most people believe in that..but it's just not the case. In fact the knee pressure to stop at 90deg rather than go down deep is actually greater on the joint. Other than physiologic stress, people that do stop there never learn to activate their hamstrings and gluts, trying to load up the quads instead. That being said you now have an extreme imbalance of overdominant quads and weak hamstrings...which is knee pain waiting to happen. If a person can not go past 90deg then they need to lessen the weight until they properly learn to activate their hamstrings and glutes.

I'm sure if you do a search this topic was covered in much more detail a month or so ago...and plenty of testimonials including mine of how deep squat training (with a lighter load to work on my hamstring weakness) improved my knees...not made them worse. Comes down to the simple fact...most people do not know how to squat properly and would rather look impressive with heavy weights going 1/2 way down than backing off and learning how to do it correctly in the first place.
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Old 10-25-2006, 08:03 AM   #4
Howard Wilcox
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I think Rippetoe mentions the study that led many people to thinking squats were bad for the knees...I just can't remember where I saw it. I don't think it was in Starting Strength (though it probably explains the whole thing...50+ pages on the squat afterall), perhaps his CFJ article on the squat??

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Old 10-25-2006, 08:06 AM   #5
Michael Homburger
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See CF Journal #49 (Sept '06) ffl=&cip= 9&cat=cfjbak&catstr=HOME:cfj:c fjbak
Mark Rippletoe has an article that addresses your question.

Read Krista, parts 1-4:
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Old 10-25-2006, 08:46 AM   #6
Jerimiah Childress
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we recently had this discussion on the medical board here are the links.
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Old 10-25-2006, 10:22 AM   #7
Peter Queen
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"People warn that it is bad for your knees and back, inappropriate for beginners (or anyone not a male collegiate athlete), too hard to learn, blah blah the sky is falling, etc."

I like that part at the beginning of the article.:lol:

Being a firefighter, aquatting has beena blast and has proven to be very helpful in keeping me flexible in many ways as I undergo rigorous levels of physical exertion during training and actual life saving activities. I also love the Sumo-DLHPs. Those and squats have also greatly help to keep me going. :happy:
The article is right in regards to people not knowing how to do them right. going past 90 is the proper ROM and will only enhance your day to day activities no matter what they are from picking your kids up to play with them to dragging someone to safety on a high risk job. I've also posted on the importance of good leg strength in the past.

Aaron, no offense to your physio but you should tell her "yeah next time maybe do a little research" as the caveman said in that Geico commercial at the restaurant:
I love those commercials.:lol:

Sorry for the pseudo thread hi-jack.
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Old 10-25-2006, 04:29 PM   #8
Veronica Carpenter
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Ask any veteran OLer if deeps squats have been bad for their knees. I'm an 18yr veteran and my knees feel great.
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Old 10-25-2006, 11:41 PM   #9
John Biddle
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To add to the anecdotal responses - I've lived in Asian countries most of the last 10 years. People here squat right down on their haunches often and for extended periods of time - praying, ceremonies, preparing food, making or repairing things, resting in the shade, bodily functions. I can't squat like that, not having been brought up doing so, but I'm the one with the bad knees (from running and rugby) not them.
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Old 10-25-2006, 11:45 PM   #10
Ignacio Rios
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I competed in Oly Lifting for 2 years, I still do the lifts, but I don't compete. (Joined the Military) I've gone as far as tapping my butt on ssage edthe platform catching a snatch in competition, my knees are great. You can check out masters competition and these guy go DEEP!

I remeber having this discussion with my coach, there is nothing bad with full squats.

John Garhammer lifted with us a lot, he always does full squats.

(Message edited by ElSenor on October 26, 2006)
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