“Do not do squats!” It’s almost a mantra for me, and I don’t know why. After all, squats, deep knee bends and lunges have probably paid for both of my kids’ college and grad school educations. I should love the squat, but for years I’ve been telling my patients don’t do squats, wondering if I was alone in this opinion, and then I saw this on the internet. Orthopedic surgeon invents Crossfit to fund his children’s education! Who’da thunk it? Has a baker ever told his client not to eat cake? Has a plumber ever told her clients to give a courtesy flush before using the toilet paper? But medical professionals should have a different perspective, right? That’s why your dentist tells you not to eat sugar. It doesn’t mean you listen.
And so, I blog. Over and over. DO NOT DO SQUATS. And patients and readers get mad, especially if they’ve paid for a year of kettle bell or Camp Gladiator classes. Face it. The exercise industry is invested in squats and, in particular, women doing squats. You’ve been brainwashed to think it’s the only way to burn the calories and build up that booty. But I promise that so many of you will end up in pain, damaged, under the knife, and with the only thing “swole” being your knees.
Squats are bad for your knees, particularly women’s knees, because of the way we’re put together. Squats put tremendous pressure on our knee caps and our meniscus cartilages.
People ask me if they can do quarter squats, deep knee bends, lunges, little bits of squats, or squats only on Tuesdays? It’s like the dentist telling someone they can eat a little sugar, a little chocolate, only every other day, at noon. It’s easier, and better, just to say, “Don’t eat sugar.” So… Don’t do squats.
PS: To strengthen your legs walk, cycle, swim or do straight leg raises.