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P90X Legs and Back-Knee Problems
I am looking for some good alternatives to lunges and squats. My knees cannot handle many of the leg exercises in the Legs and Back dvd. Here is what is interesting to me. The Debby Siebers squats and the alternating squats (where you are on your tip toes) seem to feel pretty OK (if I don't go too low). I am anxious to get my legs in as great of shape as my abs and upper body. I am willing to work hard but just don't want to compromise my knees any further. I remember doing floor exercises in years past for quads and hamstrings, but would like advice on how to add weights. Please help
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RE: P90X Legs and Back-Knee Problems
1/8/11 3:45 PM as a reply to FloridaMomP90X.
Just like in the Sieber speed squats and the sneaky lunges, don't go very far down. Go down as far as you can to were it doesn't hurt. Your body will adjust and you'll be able to go down further and further every time. Best of luck!
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RE: P90X Legs and Back-Knee Problems
1/8/11 4:24 PM as a reply to FloridaMomP90X.
FloridaMomP90X:
I am looking for some good alternatives to lunges and squats. My knees cannot handle many of the leg exercises in the Legs and Back dvd. Here is what is interesting to me. The Debby Siebers squats and the alternating squats (where you are on your tip toes) seem to feel pretty OK (if I don't go too low). I am anxious to get my legs in as great of shape as my abs and upper body. I am willing to work hard but just don't want to compromise my knees any further. I remember doing floor exercises in years past for quads and hamstrings, but would like advice on how to add weights. Please help


Is it pain or weakness limiting your knees? Do you have a medical diagnosis (chondromalacia or ligament tears, etc)?

Avoiding weights, limiting range of motion and focussing on technique above all else may lead to improvements over time.

How long have you been doing the program?
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RE: P90X Legs and Back-Knee Problems
1/8/11 9:06 PM as a reply to Turbodoc.
No, I haven't seen a doctor about it. I've had problems with lunges since before P90X, but I guess I am noticing it more now because I am keeping up with the workouts 6 days a week. I have never done that good with any workout before. Today was my 37th day.

What I experience is truly pain, though not debilitating. I have no or very little pain when just walking. My pain only comes when I bend my knees. The worst exercises for me are the balance lunges, super skaters, step back lunges, and the dead lift squats. I really can't do those at all and would love to know of any modifications or alternative exercises. All the other exercises (except calves, and sneaky lunges) I modify as much as I can.

The reason I posted is because I feel like I dogged it yesterday and my legs are the part on my body that need the most work. Is there another fitness program that might meet my needs for my legs, but have more "knee friendly" moves?

Thanks for any additional help you may be able to give.

Brenda
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RE: P90X Legs and Back-Knee Problems
1/10/11 11:18 PM as a reply to FloridaMomP90X.
So, yes, if you are feeling actual joint pain attributed to the above exercises, you should back off of them completely. And here is the thing: all of the above are working your glutes, quads, and hamstrings. And there are other exercises that will do that as well, and rather effectively. So, try the following replacements, and let me know if it takes the pressure off of the knee: step ups, sumo squats, hamstring curls on a ball, ball squats, back bridging.

1. Step Ups: find a stool or step that is about your knee height. Place one foot firmly on stool, step up on to foot and almost straighten the leg. Lower self back down to start. Repeat many times, and switch legs.

2. Sumo squats: Start with feet wider than hips, feet externally rotated. Lower your seat down to knee level, keeping the chest up. Dig the heels into the ground, as you straighetn your legs back up to the starting position. Repeat many times.

3. Hamstring curls on ball: Using a stability ball, lie on your back on the floor. Put your ankles on the ball, with your legs fully extended. Bridge your hips off of the ground, keeping your head, shoulders, and arms on the ground. Bend your knees, rolling the ball towards your seat, hold for a moment,and then fully extend the legs to straight again. You can also do this one leg at a time, for more of a challenge.

4. Ball squats: Placing the ball against the wall, put your lower back and hips up against the ball. Take a 1-2 foot step forward with both legs, leaning back into the ball, feet hip width and parallel. Bend your knees, lowering your seat down to knee level. Hold for one moment, and then extend the legs straight again.

5. Back bridging: Lie on the floor, bend knees like you were going to do a crunch. Shift weight on to one leg, extending other leg straight up towards the ceiling. Press into the heel of the standing leg and push hips up towards ceiling. Repeat many times, and switch to opposite legs.

Again, please let me know what works and doesn't and be careful. If the pain continues, please seek the advice of your health care provider.
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