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  1. #1
    Registered User amateurfemale's Avatar
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    I have bad knees but want nice butt....HELP!!!

    I just had an MRI done on my knee and found out that I have arthritis in my right knee and minimal cartilage (sp?) left over from a knee surgery for a miniscus tear 5 years ago. This really sucks since I am only 26 years old. I have been having pain in the knee for a while so I figured I should get it checked out. I stressed to the doctor that my #1 goal was to get back to doing squats, lunges, leg extensions etc with no pain since I enjoy working out so much. Anyways, after he reviewed the MRI, I was devastated to hear from the doctor that he recommends that I do "NO" more exercises that involve bending the knee like squats, lunges and leg extensions. My question is this, are there any exercises that can still put mass on my butt and thighs without doing exercises that bend the knee? I can bend the knee "slightly" but not anything over 45-50 degrees or so according to the doctor. If you can offer some personal experience that would be great!!! Please help!!!

    Also, if there simply is no exercise that can put mass on my legs/butt then what is the next best thing for a firm tight butt?
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  2. #2
    TERMINATRESS dungeonmistress's Avatar
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    I have a bad knee too from over 25 years of heavy lifting and old age - arthritis and torn meniscus. Dr wanted to try conservative approach before scoping which he said wouldn't really help much. You might wanna look into Synvisc therapy. Anyway I still squat just to parallel though. Hack squats the same. Had to give up lunges. Still do extensions/curls and also leg press. For glutes I do Romanian deadlifts supersetted with weighted hyperextensions holding/squeezing at the top of each rep to a count of 4.
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  3. #3
    Registered User amateurfemale's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by dungeonmistress View Post
    I have a bad knee too from over 25 years of heavy lifting and old age - arthritis and torn meniscus. Dr wanted to try conservative approach before scoping which he said wouldn't really help much. You might wanna look into Synvisc therapy. Anyway I still squat just to parallel though. Hack squats the same. Had to give up lunges. Still do extensions/curls and also leg press. For glutes I do Romanian deadlifts supersetted with weighted hyperextensions holding/squeezing at the top of each rep to a count of 4.

    dungeonmistress, how are you able to do squats etc with bad knees? Wont this speed up the deterioration? (BTW, you look great in your photos!!!)

    Can anyone offer feedback on expected results from just doing Romanian deadlifts supersetted with hyperextensions?

    I am also looking into heavy resistance low impact exercises like spinning with the resistance turned up high or the elliptical with the same high resistance.
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  4. #4
    TERMINATRESS dungeonmistress's Avatar
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    Maybe, maybe not. I don't squat like I used to (very heavy and deep). At this stage of the game it doesn't matter to me if I have arthritis - I'm 51 and will continue to train but more cautiously. No dr will tell me what not to do. I train around my knees but I still train. Dr never said I had to quit, said I should modify. I do cardio as well; running is out totally so I do the elliptical. I had Synvisc so if you're interested in pursuing that avenue I'd be happy to share my experience with you.
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  5. #5
    Registered User amateurfemale's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by dungeonmistress View Post
    Maybe, maybe not. I don't squat like I used to (very heavy and deep). At this stage of the game it doesn't matter to me if I have arthritis - I'm 51 and will continue to train but more cautiously. No dr will tell me what not to do. I train around my knees but I still train. Dr never said I had to quit, said I should modify. I do cardio as well; running is out totally so I do the elliptical. I had Synvisc so if you're interested in pursuing that avenue I'd be happy to share my experience with you.
    Yes, please share about the Synvisc therapy!
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  6. #6
    TERMINATRESS dungeonmistress's Avatar
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    First I hope you're seeing a sports med Ortho and not a regular dr. Synvisc is a series of 3 injections (1 a week) that is like a lube job for the knee. The fluid becomes less viscous as we age thereby providing less and less over time lubrication to a moving joint. You're still young but viscous breakdown starts at about age 18. Anyway you can imagine how this stuff would better cushion the joint and slow down further possible deterioration from working out. I have what I have but it won't stop me from doing the things I love. Work with a PT to figure out what you can do and take it from there. Don't give up - you will however need to be ok to work out with restrictions like not so heavy, not so deep but it sure beats sitting around doing nothing.
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  7. #7
    Registered User lulusmom's Avatar
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    The only thing I can think of that would help the glutes and thighs without bending the knee are leg raises to the back while standing, and hyperextensions to the front. However, I have bad knees also (from 6 years of grinding them down on a wooden stage as an exotic dancer) and as long as you use proper form for squats I think you should be okay. I do notice more soreness with leg press and lunges, but squats and leg extensions should be beneficial. If you have bad knees it makes sense that you want to strengthen the surrounding muscles and tendons to support the weak joint, and especially to work the quads. Even after knee surgery to shave the meniscus, docs told my husband to be doing some exercises for the quads.
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  8. #8
    Registered User mimers210's Avatar
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    pilates!

    try pilates! it doesnt use weights so its not that great compared to squatting a hundred pounds, but i have knee problems and ive found that pilates has some really good butt exercises and they're mostly all done on the ground so youre not straining your knees!
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  9. #9
    stretching blows boathead's Avatar
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    romanians will take you where you want to go. i too have poor knees, and can handle romanians without event. they actually will help stabilize the knee as well.
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  10. #10
    Registered User tawney76's Avatar
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    Is the doctor involved in weightlifting or bodybuilding at all? Because I've noticed that not only do they tend to shy away from giving advice that could result in hurting you... but in most cases, unless they have major workout experience they will Blanket Statement Tell You to avoid exercise alltogether.
    He may suggest walking- but you can bet your butt a doctor who looks like gangly bone dan is not gonna say, "oh, so you wanna do barbell exercises where you have to bend your injured knees? That's sounds good, go ahead and do those."

    See my point?

    You need to understand this fact in order to realize that it may be in your best personal interest to avoid scrawny man's advice when it pertains to exercise. (or krispy kreme man or whatever)

    Finding a doctor who looks like a Greek God of fitness would be nice if you could do it, because the advice would be more accurate, but if you can't, maybe some of the people with similar knee injuries who work out can give you the best advice.

    Always remember that when you get advice from someone, it does not automatically translate as getting FACTS.
    Last edited by tawney76; 10-25-2008 at 05:45 AM.
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  11. #11
    Registered User zakkala's Avatar
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    I've got arthritis too - have had for a few years. Must admit, I've ignored doctor's advice - I run, squat, leg curl etc.

    To be honest, I don't see the sense in a doc advising not to do exercise that bend the knee - your knees bend all the time in day to day life (sitting, going up and down stairs etc) so surely strengthening the muscles that stabilise the joint in those movements makes more sense? Still, I'm no medic, so probably shouldn't comment on that!

    The only advice I can give from experience is this - no doctor knows how you feel. You know your body best and if the way you feel ties in with the doc's advice, then follow it - if you feel it's not right for you then go with your own feelings and try what you want to. If you want to try something, concentrate on perfect form, try it for a month or two and if it's not helping, or making things worse, scrap it and go back to the drawing board.

    Personally, I've found that with arthritis, the joints I have it in (according to the doc that's knees for sure and possibly lower back, hands, feet etc) react better to being used - keeping them moving and working hard, rather than trying to protect them. But that's just me - might not work for everyone.

    Good luck.
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  12. #12
    Registered User amateurfemale's Avatar
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    Ok,

    Through mad research, comments on this post and this website I have finally put together a routine. I will monitor progress as time goes by. Let me know your thoughts PLEASE!!! (Remember I'm an amateur)

    Exercises are performed in this order after proper warm up with appropriate weight for my fitness level:

    Romanian deadlifts 5x12

    Weighted hyperextenions 4x12

    Inner thigh and Outer thigh hip abductors switching back and forth between each set 4x12 the fourth set is a burnout set lightening the weight all the way to lightest plate.

    Leg kickbacks on all fours 4x15

    Standing calf raises 4x15 with a burnout set on fourth set.

    I did not have to bend the knee for any of these exercises and I was beat at the end.

    Also, I will be attending one hour spinning classes 3 times a week. I plan to use high resistance on the bike to help build muscle versus cardio. BTW, the doctor did say I could bike as long as there was no pain.

    YOUR THOUGHTS PLEASE??? Feel free to not hold back on the negative comments. Remember, I want a nice firm butt and toned legs. I do not plan to ever compete or anything I just want a toned and muscular lower body.

    Thanks!!!
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  13. #13
    Not saying much. ChicagoChef's Avatar
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    Alright, I have some bad knees. The back of my left knee cap is all shredded up (had both arthroscopic and open knee surgery on it last year). MRI's show premature deterioration of the cartilage as well.

    My ortho told me I can continue to squat and whatnot, but I can't go past parallel and I have to be careful with the position of my feet.

    She said absolutely under no circumstances am I EVER to do any type of leg extensions. She said that no one should do them, really. The weight ends up pressing the knee cap up against the femur so it can cause damage in that way. Told me to do leg presses instead... easier on the knees.

    I totally believe it too... I was having severe knee problems a couple of weeks ago, so bad I could barely walk, and once I omitted the extensions the pain went away.

    Whatever. I'm just saying... maybe you will need to avoid certain types of exercises, but you can find alternatives. Personally, as far as exercises for the butt are concerned, I like to wide stance plie squats at higher reps. Seems a lot easier on my knees. You can also try pelvic bridges and things like that. I also like deads and good mornings.
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  14. #14
    Boohyah! Tishalicious's Avatar
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    I got knee surgery about 5 years back and my knee still gives me hell sometimes - and my non-Greek-God general practitioner doesn't want me lifting for many many reasons. I've also got arthritus on just about every joint - but I figure if I don't keep moving, and feeding my body what it needs to take care of itself, then I'll end up in a nursing home.

    I've been trying out Animal Flex and have got good results in my wrists, thumbs, knees, etc. Maybe its doing what the advertising says and feeding the joints what they need to repair and strengthen.

    Still 'listen' out for when knees (or other joints) aren't so strong, and change about my exercises to avoid messing them around.

    Try out a specialist that also treats sports people - that might help.
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  15. #15
    i love eggs GoutDeMiel's Avatar
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    I don't have arthritis, but I do get nasty pains in my hips and knees when I run long distances. I started taking Glucosamine supps a few months ago (I think they're meant for old people LOL) and it did the trick. No more pain or creaking!

    Glucosamine is supposed to cushion and lubricate your joints - maybe it will help you? I have no idea how much pain you're in and if it would be enough for you, but perhaps its worth a shot...

    That other treatment you were talking about sounds painful as hell! Then again, I have a thing with needles.....
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  16. #16
    Pink Knight rebeckyt's Avatar
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    Check out this link:

    http://www.t-nation.com/free_online_...the_glute_myth

    Has some great exercises that focus on glutes. I've been following the routine in addition to my normal leg day and my glutes are definitely stronger than they were 6 weeks ago. I wish you all the best with your training. Cheers
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  17. #17
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    Originally Posted by rebeckyt View Post
    Check out this link:

    http://www.t-nation.com/free_online_...the_glute_myth

    Has some great exercises that focus on glutes. I've been following the routine in addition to my normal leg day and my glutes are definitely stronger than they were 6 weeks ago. I wish you all the best with your training. Cheers
    This post was from 2008, girly. lol I hope she's found her answer by now :P
    If it is important to you, you will find a way.
    If it's not, you will find an excuse.

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    Pink Knight rebeckyt's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by resilience5241 View Post
    This post was from 2008, girly. lol I hope she's found her answer by now :P
    LOL didn't even notice the date, thats what I get for browsing forums at 5 am I guess. Surprised it was on the first page.....Oh well, maybe it will help someone else out :-)
    Being weak is a choice. So is being strong.

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    Registered User amateurfemale's Avatar
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    Yes i found my answer. Lol. Progress is steady. 

    5 years later and going strong !
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    achieved bro status discdoggie's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by amateurfemale View Post
    Yes i found my answer. Lol. Progress is steady. 

    5 years later and going strong !
    Wow! Thanks for updating!
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    Registered User Jodie10's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by amateurfemale View Post
    Yes i found my answer. Lol. Progress is steady. 

    5 years later and going strong !
    So what did you do? And how are the knees, did you have surgery?
    Under Construction.
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    Registered User amateurfemale's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Jodie10 View Post
    So what did you do? And how are the knees, did you have surgery?
    No surgery. I just started squatting and concentrating on form and also deadlifting and leg press. After a while the muscles strengthened up around the knee and Ive been good to go. I also take ibuprofen on leg day to be safe.
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    I noted that in your profile pic you are hyperextending your knees a bit. Don't know if this has contributed to your knee issue. The leg presses pictured might shorten up the tendons around your knee and possibly (?) prove to be beneficial as well as effective for your glutes?

    Edit: I'm not a doctor, just observing. I also, as a former dancer, have hyperextension
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    Registered User coconuttree2009's Avatar
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    Butt builder that are knee savers: SLDL'S (single leg also) and Pullthroughs.
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    Registered User amateurfemale's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Jodie10 View Post
    I noted that in your profile pic you are hyperextending your knees a bit. Don't know if this has contributed to your knee issue. The leg presses pictured might shorten up the tendons around your knee and possibly (?) prove to be beneficial as well as effective for your glutes?

    Edit: I'm not a doctor, just observing. I also, as a former dancer, have hyperextension
    Thats just the way I happen to be standing in the picture.
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