One of the most challenging clients if you are talking about creating programs. However, this client had a lot of motivation that made my job so easy. It was fun personal training sessions with this client.
About this client
I had a chance to work with a client who had an ACL injury a week before we started training. She said she will have surgery but wanted to strengthen the muscles before the surgery.
Focus on muscles that supports knees
We did quite a lot of training on muscles around the hip and knee. Seated knee extension, hamstring curl as long as she had no pain by doing so. Also working on hips is crucial since these muscles will produce “stability” on knees and ankles. Lying on side and side leg raises, clam shell to train those muscles.
Did we terminate squat / lunge?
We didn’t try lunges but we tried squats.
Squats are essential for daily life. She needs to be able to do squats without pain. The first thing we tried was to find out how low she could go without feeling pain. Then we tried 2 sets of 10 – 15 repetitions of shallow squats. Interestingly, she could perform lower and lower as the time passed. That was great progress for her.
For the single leg movement, we tried single leg deadlift, step up, then eccentric focus step down to strengthen. For the step ups, starting from the low elevated surface as well as using a dowel was necessary at the beginning.
Other part of muslces
Just because she had an injury on lower body, doesn’t mean we trained only lower body. We can still do upper body exercises. She had no issue on her upper body, so we did quite a lot of training such as pushups, lat pulldowns and so on. Focusing on upper body when having lower body issues is also good because it distracts her from what “she can’t do” but makes her believe she still can do many things.