Knees Past Toes

Knees Past Toes

Have you ever been told your knees shouldn’t go past your toes?

Or have you said that to your clients/patients?

Do you have any idea why that became one of the “Exercise Commandments” that we all must follow at all times?

1) Question everything you hear that is presented as an absolute.

ESPECIALLY before adopting this “truth” and spreading it like wildfire. When it comes to human movement, there are a lot less absolutes than most trainers, coaches, clinicians, and professors would like you to believe. A LOT

2) If the knee should never go past your toes, then why is it able to?

Why do we have so much dorsiflexion if we “aren’t allowed” to use it?

3) The human body can handle a lot more than we think.

Stop instilling fear in people by telling them how terrible the knee tracking past the toes is. We should be making our clients/patients feel strong and resilient, not fragile and weak!

4) This was harder than it looks because I was actively pulling myself down into this position rather than falling into it.

I have a ton of range of motion. Including ankle dorsiflexion. By exploring the ranges I have, and actively using my muscles and contracting in those positions, I’m beginning to own some of these positions. Gravity is not the friend of bendy people like myself.

Flexibility without active control is a liability.

Knees traveling past your toes is not necessarily a liability, got it?

PS, no knees were harmed during the making of this video.

Hip Pain & Squatting

Hip Pain & Squatting

Do you have pinching or pain in the front of your hip (or hips) when squatting?

If so, you’re not alone. This is a very common complaint we hear and see. And probably one of the most common dysfunctions clinicians treat with crossfitters.

So why does this happen?

It could caused by a wide variety of things, including improper core stabilization, lack of ankle dorsiflexion, lack of hip internal or external rotation, bony abnormalities at the hip joint, your squat stance, or even your motor control/squat technique itself.

As you can see, there’s more to look at than just the hip.

So if you’ve been continually mobilizing your hip with a monster band without much luck, maybe it’s time to look elsewhere!

And as always, it’s best to get assessed by a licensed clinician who can find your cause, rather than you blindly guessing on what to work on.

You can probably see a trend in our posts.

We’ll never tell you what exactly to do. Because we haven’t assessed you. Until then, the solution is always, “It depends.”

There’s never one “best exercise” to get rid of hip pain when squatting.

Squatting & Knee Pain

Squatting & Knee Pain

There is a lot that goes on within the squat movement.

Movement at the hips, knees, and ankles. Stabilization of the spine. Balance. The list goes on.

The point?

Why guess what the problem is? Your best solution is to get a thorough assessment. One that looks at not only the knee, but the entire body.

At Movement Upgraded, we like to start by first looking at how you move your ENTIRE body.

This gives us a great idea about your motor control abilities as well as how ALL your joints work.

Next, we assess ALL ranges of motion in nearly EVERY joint in your body. Yes, both active AND passive. This gives us a great idea about your mobility and flexibility and if there is a difference between the two.

Gathering all of this information helps us understand why your knee is hurting.

Is that all?

Absolutely not! We also check the squat movement itself.

Maybe all of your joints work fine and we just need to critique your squat form. Maybe you just need to practice the squat more. Maybe you need to change up your squat stance. Again, the list goes on.

Are we done yet?

Hell no! Maybe your tissues are just not strong enough yet (or you loaded the tissues too much too quickly). Maybe the pain only happens at certain parts of the squat and all you need to do is strengthen your tissues in that exact part of the squat.

Is that all? No. Did we forget to talk about something very important? Probably. And that is our point.

Social media and blogs are a great place to become informed, but DO NOT get free medical advice from random social media and blog posts.

One post may help some people, and that same post may harm someone else. Take your health seriously, it is kind of important. If you have pain, get assessed.

Deep Squat: Is It Bad For Your Knees?

Deep Squat: Is It Bad For Your Knees?

Is squatting below parallel bad for your knees?

This is a debate that we hear often. And one that was unfortunately not winnable in chiropractic & physical therapy school. (Good luck debating this with your instructors.)

Is the deep squat bad for the knees?

NO. May it be bad for YOUR knees? It depends.

There are so many factors that attribute to whether or not the deep squat is right for you (here are a few):

  • Do you have the mobility prerequisites?
  • Do you have adequate core stability?
  • Do you have any joint pathologies?
  • Have you deep squatted throughout life?
  • What is your intention or goal?

All of these factors attribute to whether or not the deep squat is right for you. And if it’s good for your knees.

As you see in the above picture, the forces and tissues with the most load change throughout the depth of the squat.

There is increased shear below 90 degrees of knee flexion (above parallel) and increased compression above 90 degrees (below parallel). Neither are inherently worse than the other when the tissues being loaded are prepared for the load.

In the end, the only “bad” exercise or movement is the one your tissues are not prepared for.

Tissue capacity must be greater than the load. Simple as that.

Ankle Mobility & Front Squats

Ankle Mobility & Front Squats

Some people will tell you not to front squat if you have poor ankle mobility.

We call bullshit!

Don’t quit squatting.

You can wear Olympic weightlifting shoes or place a weight plate underneath your feet to give you artificial ankle dorsiflexion. Both options work!

We don’t mean neglect working on your ankle dorsiflexion mobility. We’re just saying don’t stop strength training!

Work on your ankle mobility after your training session. Or between sets or exercises. Or whenever! Just put in the work and you’ll reap the benefits.


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