The Five Biggest Contradictions in Fitness
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The Five Biggest Contradictions in Fitness

Itís no secret that when people contradict themselves, it has the effect of making the flaws in their actions or statements seem glaringly obvious. But what about when WE ourselves get caught contradicting ourselves by someone else?

By: Nick Tumminello Added: January 6th, 2014
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  1. #1
    Senior Member The Champion's Avatar
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    Substitution for Squatting

    I know all of you are frowning as you read the title, but squatting isn't realistic for me. By age 17 I've already lost nearly all the cartilege in my left knee and a good chunk of it in my right knee- i've played catcher for too many years.

    Any exercises or dare I say, machines, that can "substitute" for a squat? I've been doing leg press machines, the horizontal sit with the individual leg platforms to kick out. I do about 330lbs on each leg.

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  3. #2
    Senior Member stevec087's Avatar
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    How does squatting hurt your leg and leg pressing not? Work on you form with really low weights until you nail the form perfectly. Then slowly increase the weights. You could give split squats a go, they're easy to learn and shouldn't put as much stress on your knee.
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  4. #3
    BB'er turned PL'er Phenom's Avatar
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    I just turned 19 and I was a catcher for 7 years (age 11 - 17) and if anything, catching has helped my legs tremendously, are you positive catching is responsible for your knee problems? Anyway, I'm not a doctor so I'm not gonna tell you to try and do squats or not, but if I were you I would talk to a doctor and find out if you really are out of commission for squats because they really are the principal leg exercise in any workout. If it turns out you definitely unable to do squats then you have no choice but to stick to leg press, leg extensions, hamstring curls, etc.
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  5. #4
    Senior Member Doobs's Avatar
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    Extensions are probably the worst thing for your knees. SLDL would be good since you don't have to bend your knees much, goodmornings too. There's not a whole lot you can do for your quads, depending on how bad your situation is.

  6. #5
    Senior Member Doobs's Avatar
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    Extensions are probably the worst thing for your knees. SLDL would be good since you don't have to bend your knees much, goodmornings too. There's not a whole lot you can do for your quads, depending on how bad your situation is. Almost any doctor you talk to will tell you not to squat or deadlift even if you're perfectly healthy.

  7. #6
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    im in a similar boat as you, except i can barely sit in a chair without my knees hurting tremendously. it gets so bad that i wake up in the middle of the night in pain, welcome to my life!

    anyways, as far as quads go you are pretty much screwed, but deadlifts, RDL and SLDL are all options. as far as deadlifts go, be prepared to do them more like big ron does: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CqPLIJ7YyLk

    with very little sitting back into the deadlift.

  8. #7
    Senior Member Levantar's Avatar
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    This probably doesn't help but here's my suggestion. Stop doing leg exercises. If you really have lost most of the cartiledge in both knees then you should be going to a doctor not a gym. Your only 17. There is something SERIOUSLY wrong with your body. Get it fixed before you can't walk.

  9. #8
    cakin Cirino83's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Levantar View Post
    This probably doesn't help but here's my suggestion. Stop doing leg exercises. If you really have lost most of the cartiledge in both knees then you should be going to a doctor not a gym. Your only 17. There is something SERIOUSLY wrong with your body. Get it fixed before you can't walk.
    I agree.

  10. #9
    Banned Prodigy06's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Burgundy56 View Post
    I agree.
    I also agree, you don't want to make a bad thing worse.
    Believe it or not free squats aren't he only thing that make your legs grow. Leg press, deadlifts, SLDL, machine squats will work if you can do them.

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  12. #11
    Senior Member Natetaco's Avatar
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    from what iv read leg press just seems like an all around bad excersize, bad for knees, bad for back, just dont do it. And another thread on squat substitutes... wow just squat.
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  13. #12
    DeaTH BeFoRe WeaKNeSs sCaRz*Of*PaiN's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prodigy06
    machine squats will work if you can do them.
    Just say NO to machine squats.
    "The only easy day was yesterday."

  14. #13
    As I Am Paul Stagg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Levantar View Post
    This probably doesn't help but here's my suggestion. Stop doing leg exercises. If you really have lost most of the cartiledge in both knees then you should be going to a doctor not a gym. Your only 17. There is something SERIOUSLY wrong with your body. Get it fixed before you can't walk.
    Indeed. Who told you you 'lost nearly all your cartilege'(sic)? Can you walk up stairs?

    If you are as bad off as you think, you should be working with a physical therapist to help you rehab those joints, otherwise you'll be wheelchair bound in a couple of years.
    Squats work better than supplements.
    "You know, if I thought like that, I'd never put more than one plate on the bar for anything, I'd never use bands or chains, I'd never squat to parallel or below, and I'd never let out the slightest grunt when I lift. At some point in your lifting career (assuming you're planning on getting reasonably strong and big), you're going to have to accept that most people think you are some kind of freak." -Sensei
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  15. #14
    Breaker of Skulls Guido's Avatar
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    Using machines is never a good subsitute for free weights. You are still using the same joints, only you are limited in your range of motion thus minimizing the involvement of stabilizers around thsoe joints. How would having weaker stabilizer muscles help ease your pain? Short answer: It WON'T. If anything, you will be more prone to injury.

    Nobody said you can't do free weights with light weight. If you start out light, but use proper form, and do some mobility work (see Eric Cressey articles on T-Nation site), your pain should ease some and you'll still gain strength in the process. Also, start taking glucosamine and fish oil caps. They will help with the joint pain and will aid in recovery.

    Why use cop outs to avoid doing something that will help you? By doing things that limit your range of motion, you're only going to limit your own mobility in the future.
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  16. #15
    HomeYield WillKuenzel's Avatar
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    Squats have actually helped my knees. I had/have tendonitis in both knees but especially my left knee from pole vaulting for 6 years. I was destroying the cartilage in my knees, according to my doctor. I didn't know how to squat either.

    After taking some time off, I thought I was doomed to having little legs because even after the time off I still had shooting pain in both knees when trying to anything lower body related. I started deadlifting mostly because it didn't seem as bad but have gone back to squatting since learning how to properly. A proper squat will actually help the knees, because you are squatting with the hips and putting the pressure through the hips and not on the knees.


    My first suggestion to anything though, is go see a doctor. Don't do anything until you know exactly what is that is causing the pain. From there make sure you do physical therapy or anthing that they need you to do before finding somebody to teach you how to squat properly. If you can't squat right then there isn't any other leg exercise that will be a substitute because you'll always have the pain in your knees.
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  17. #16
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    IMO there is only one genuinely good substitute for squats - weighted step-ups.
    Either hold two dumbells by your sides or a barbell across your shoulders and step-up onto a strong metal chair/raised platform that is at least 45cm high (allowing you thighs to be parallel to the ground.
    It's like doing single leg squats. Some people might compare it to a leg press, but the key difference is the use of free weights.

    http://www.exrx.net/WeightExercises/.../DBStepUp.html

  18. #17
    Breaker of Skulls Guido's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JConrad View Post
    IMO there is only one genuinely good substitute for squats - weighted step-ups.
    Either hold two dumbells by your sides or a barbell across your shoulders and step-up onto a strong metal chair/raised platform that is at least 45cm high (allowing you thighs to be parallel to the ground.
    It's like doing single leg squats. Some people might compare it to a leg press, but the key difference is the use of free weights.

    http://www.exrx.net/WeightExercises/.../DBStepUp.html
    That does seem like it would be closest to duplicating the benefits of doing actual squats. The only problem is finding a strong enoiugh chair/platform to use for them.
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  19. #18
    Wannabebig Member froze1231's Avatar
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    i was a catcher for close to 7 or 8 years of my life and it is also very painful when squating.....i just recently started squating again with low weights to see if i can develop a better technique and i also do a decline leg press and some of the squating machines at my gym do not put too much strain on my knees

  20. #19
    fat and small Blood&Iron's Avatar
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    A *good* leg-press is completely acceptable alternative. I try not to be dogmatic about much of anything when it comes to lifting and diet these days, but anyone who says squats or deads (or any single exercise) are a must is just being silly.

    EDIT: My bad for only skimming the original post. If you're having knee problems, definitely consult a doctor before you do anything.
    Last edited by Blood&Iron; 01-25-2007 at 04:45 PM.

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  21. #20
    Senior Member Levantar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blood&Iron View Post
    A *good* leg-press is completely acceptable alternative. I try not to be dogmatic about much of anything when it comes to lifting and diet these days, but anyone who says squats or deads (or any single exercise) are a must is just being silly.

    EDIT: My bad for only skimming the original post. If you're having knee problems, definitely consult a doctor before you do anything.
    There are a million and one ways to skin a cat but often times there is 1 single way that is the most effective, quickest, or easiest. I think that's what people are saying when they say squats and deads are a must. I have only been really lifting hard for 3 months but incorporating heavy compounds in to my routine helps me work almost my entire body in 4 exercises and saves time. (squats, deads, bench, rows)

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