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  1. #1
    saarx1's Avatar
    saarx1 is offline Senior Member
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    strengthening the leg

    Primal Fuel
    hi guys.
    My legs muscles are very very weak and i am pretty over weight (6'1, 100k)..
    Because of that i have knee pains in both legs, and my knees arent held very well which makes me unable to do any kind of excercise (they even get out of place when i walk for like 2k or so).
    My doctor said i need to strengthen my legs..
    How do i do that? Im scared to squat because my knees arent held very well.. maybe some bodyweight (not too much) squats but definetly not with additional weight.. I also have access to leg press machine.
    Can u guys help me on what to do (beside losing weight).

  2. #2
    twa2w's Avatar
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    You can do assisted squats. here are three ways
    1) Hang onto a door knob (the opposite side of the door to the way it opens so it doesn't pop open on you) lean back a bit and drop into a squat as far as you are comfortable - use your arms as somewhat of an assist.
    2) open a door and hang a long towel over the top. Grab an end in each hand facing the door. Do a squat with your knees to each side of the door - again use your arms to assist and only drop down a comfortable amount. You can adjust your foot placement wider/naroower - closer or fartehr from the door. If the towl slip[s off you will land on your ass. You can also hang onto the door knob on either side of the door as well. You will progress
    3) put a chin up bar in an un-used doorway at about nipple/shoulder height. Hand onto it like you were doing a chin-up. The drop into a squat use your arms to assist you. Try standing farther away or closer to the bar to get different effects. Use an under hand or overhand grip as you like. You can buid arm strength too as you use your arms to lift yourself. You can use this to do really fast 'chin-squats' and do Tabata style intervals once you get quiker and stronger.

    OR You can do step ups. - with or with out weight. Uas a small step say 10 to 12 inches to start - if too strenuous go to lower step. Yes you can use your stairs. You can also curl a hand weight or do shoulder presses while stepping.
    You can also step up with some very heavy weights if you like.
    I like to use a box that I can straddle. I stand on the top of the box. I step off to the left with my left foot then back up on the box and off to the right with my right foot I can do this slowly with heavy weights or I can use a lighter weight and go very quickly to do intervals.
    Hope it helps - remember - go slow - progress will come.

    OR You can also do chair squats. Just squat down onto a chair seat and then back up. As you get better and can do more- use a lower chair. Or if you can an exercise ball you can drop your but down onto the exercise ball and use it to bounce your way back up - sort of an assisted quat. I would place the ball in a corner so it can move the first few times you try this.
    Last edited by twa2w; 01-15-2012 at 07:10 PM.

  3. #3
    crowemagnonman's Avatar
    crowemagnonman is offline Senior Member
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    Don't fear the squat. Most pain comes from incorrect form. Watch online videos and get someone who actually knows what they're talking about to watch you. Go light at first. Just the bar even. Get the form down and strengthen your knees.

    You know at 6'2" and 104 kg myself, I don't feel very overweight. 95 Kg is my ideal weight. Guess it's all relative.
    My Blog -----> Two Bar Garage

  4. #4
    dado's Avatar
    dado Guest
    gotta squat

  5. #5
    john_e_turner_ii's Avatar
    john_e_turner_ii is offline Senior Member
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    You do not have to squat to have strong legs. Squatting is a great way to strengthen the legs, but is not the only way. As suggested above, step ups are great and so are lunges. Once you get strong enough, try bodyweight squats and/or single leg squats (Bulgarian Squats).

    However, if you have not worked out in a long time, then my first suggestion is to start walking regularly. Work your way up to four miles per day walking. You don't have to do all four miles at once, but break it up throughout the day. It's simple, low impact, healthy and will also help you lose some fat. I will miss my weight training workouts from time to time, but I will not go without doing at least 3-4 miles or more of walking each day.

  6. #6
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    Squatting actually cured my knee pain. Excellent form is key, though.

    I started back in October not able to do a proper squat (assisted/ unweighted) but this morning I did 5+5+3+3+3 back squats with a max weight of 105 lbs. My 1 rep max is 130 lbs.

    You'll be amazed how quickly you progress if you get started and keep at it.

    P.S. I'm a 42 y.o. 5' 8" 160 lb female

  7. #7
    dado's Avatar
    dado Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by john_e_turner_ii View Post
    You do not have to squat to have strong legs. Squatting is a great way to strengthen the legs, but is not the only way. As suggested above, step ups are great and so are lunges. Once you get strong enough, try bodyweight squats and/or single leg squats (Bulgarian Squats).

    However, if you have not worked out in a long time, then my first suggestion is to start walking regularly. Work your way up to four miles per day walking. You don't have to do all four miles at once, but break it up throughout the day. It's simple, low impact, healthy and will also help you lose some fat. I will miss my weight training workouts from time to time, but I will not go without doing at least 3-4 miles or more of walking each day.
    what is this? you spit on the squat.

    bant.

  8. #8
    john_e_turner_ii's Avatar
    john_e_turner_ii is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by dado View Post
    what is this? you spit on the squat.

    bant.
    Not at all. The squat is a great exercise. However, there is a tendency in here for people to recommend deadlifts and squats as if they are the only possible ways or "best" ways of gaining strength and muscle. It's just not the case. There are other methods of gaining mass and strength without either of those exercises.

  9. #9
    dado's Avatar
    dado Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by john_e_turner_ii View Post
    Not at all. The squat is a great exercise. However, there is a tendency in here for people to recommend deadlifts and squats as if they are the only possible ways or "best" ways of gaining strength and muscle. It's just not the case. There are other methods of gaining mass and strength without either of those exercises.
    blasphemy.

    there is no better way than the deadlift and squat if you are weak.

    if you already have some decent strength, this is a different story.

  10. #10
    magnolia1973's Avatar
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    It's like anything- download the Paleo fitness- he has 3 or 4 easier version of squats that work you up to real squats, then more options beyond that. You'll get there. Haha, one time I did a Body Rockers workout (good stuff there) and I dunno- it was a workout with a lot of squats and at some point, my quads went numb and I kept going. Could. not. walk. for 3 days. Just plain old bodyweight squats. Oh and my knees were not at all sore... just my quads and butt.

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