Why being ‘lucky’ with knee problems isn’t always good

lucky knee problems

“Does patella maltracking come back after it’s been heavily reduced?” one of our clients recently asked. It was an ongoing concern that if he stopped doing his knee strengthening exercises, his knee problems would eventually return. And it was a concern closely linked to the irritation that other people, at the same age with similar sports interests and training routines, had no problems to speak of. These are two matters that are closely linked and worth discussing though, because the long-term strategy behind avoiding knee problems is very important – and people who don’t necessarily have to devise a strategy are at a significant disadvantage later in life. Continue reading

Why some pain is inevitable when improving your knees

knee pain exerciseKnee pain is a vicious cycle. When it hurts to exercise your knees, you don’t want to exercise. When you don’t exercise, certain muscles weaken. When certain muscles weaken, the muscle strength in your legs becomes imbalanced. When your leg muscles are imbalanced, it hurts to exercise your knees. And so it goes.

In order to prevent that imbalance, and break free from the cycle, you need to be prepared to exercise through some discomfort. You need to expect, and accept, some discomfort in the knees as you first tackle sissy squats. More important than anything, you need to keep going for long enough to make a difference. Continue reading

Thinking between sets: the mental attitude for training success

thinking personal training regimesImproving peripheral exercises like stretches and foam rolling is relatively simple compared to improving when performing movement exercises or weight training. There is a lot to remember in doing something like a sissy squat or weighted squat, for instance. If you want to improve and develop your own training regime, however, there is only one thing you really need to remember: keep thinking. Do every exercise with the correct mentality, asking the right questions about what you need to do next to improve, and the next step should always be obvious. Thinking in the following way will remove the need to rely on prescribed lists of exercises and numbers of reps. It will make your training fluid, interesting, personally adaptive and, above all, the most beneficial training it can be. Continue reading

Training routines for foam rolling, stretches and the core

training regime stretches coreDone properly, the foam rolling, stretching and core exercises available on this site will help alleviate knee pain and ultimately help you improve your movement (alongside the main exercises) to overcome patella maltracking. It is not possible to simply do them once or twice, for a set amount of reps or minutes, and expect results, though. Following the mentality of our exercise program theory, you have to pay attention to the effects each exercise has on you individually. So what do you need to look for in these peripheral exercises, to ensure success? Continue reading

The theory behind managing a personal exercise program

personal exercise program theoryPeople like to be given simple prescriptions. When it comes to exercising, most of us want to be told we can do X exercise at Y weight, Z times a week, and stick to ticking off these numbers for results. This is a bad way to think when it comes to improving your body, and for resolving issues like knee pain – and an education in the way you develop your exercises over time is easily as important as understanding how to perform the exercises themselves.

Your body is a constantly changing thing that requires dedicated attention and flexible management. It’s important to understand how the body will develop, and what you need to do to keep progressing – and relying on a personal trainer to give you lists of numbers to tick will not, on its own, achieve the results you need. Continue reading

Managing inflammation when rehabilitating your knees

 

inflamed kneeWhen you’re not used to exercising certain parts of the body, you may find they become inflamed or swell when you put pressure on them. There are degrees of inflammation ranging from heavy swelling with constant pain down to a mild swelling and tenderness that dissipates after a few warm ups, but, whatever the degree, you are likely to experience at least some swelling in the course of rehabilitation. Try to manage the extent and volume of the work you do to ensure the swelling never becomes too severe.

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This 87-year old man can do his squats, can you?

old man squatsThe man in this photo is doing squats, standing from a chair with good form and – most importantly – no difficulty. He is 87-years old and does his squats regularly, with the mobility of a much younger person. He even trains with weighted squats. Wouldn’t you like to be able to move like that at 87-years old? Well you can. It just takes a bit of effort, and not everyone is willing to make that effort.  Continue reading