The Knees Over Toes Guy

Try Bulgarian splits - similar but with your back foot up. One of my faves.
That is what I mean by "split squats". I have done them. They work okay, but not nearly as good as ATG Split Squats, because you get a lot lower with ATG Split Squats and thus get a fuller stretch and fuller range of motion lift.
 

r3d

Woodpecker
What a coincidence. A podcast I enjoy just had the ATG founder (edit: not founder probably, but 'mentor') on yesterday:


Seems to start 21 mins in. There is some profanity in it, but I find them very easy to listen to.
 
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JohnKreese

Pelican
Knees over Toes guy is coming in hot and fast.

I assess and incorporate a number of different types of fitness programming (mainly focused on Crossfit or "functional fitness") regimes into my own training. Recently, I have noticed that multiple, rather prominent fitness programs/programmers/athletes have directly incorporated (as in the EXACT movements) KOT exercises into their programming. I like this approach because it balances the existing, sport-specific elements and movements with the KOT principles and exercises. Let's see if the trend continues.
 

hedonist

Kingfisher
I remember seeing him sometime ago but I’ve started messing with skateboarding again just in prep for surfing. Fast forward a few days ago I saw a podcast mentioned knees over toes and reconnected.

It’s funny because whenever I foam rolled I’ve hit that area which you rarely see examples of. And I also do a squat stretch where you are squatting like a child picking something up but leaning forward on my toes really stretching those muscles out.

Will have to try some of these exercises.
 

Cartographer

Pelican
Gold Member
I remember seeing him sometime ago but I’ve started messing with skateboarding again just in prep for surfing. Fast forward a few days ago I saw a podcast mentioned knees over toes and reconnected.

It’s funny because whenever I foam rolled I’ve hit that area which you rarely see examples of. And I also do a squat stretch where you are squatting like a child picking something up but leaning forward on my toes really stretching those muscles out.

Will have to try some of these exercises.
Yeah I'm looking forward to see how it applies to snowboarding. The stretches feel amazing and I've never seen leg muscle development like this before.
 

r3d

Woodpecker
So those of you who didn't buy the program, how did you start out?

I do the tibialis foot raises (will build a contraption where I glue books or weights to a pair of old shoes soon)

Then I walk backwards 15 degree uphill on a treadmill and do calf raises with knees over toes.

Those three things I gathered from the first videos to start out. Anything else recommended for beginners?
 
So those of you who didn't buy the program, how did you start out?

I do the tibialis foot raises (will build a contraption where I glue books or weights to a pair of old shoes soon)

Then I walk backwards 15 degree uphill on a treadmill and do calf raises with knees over toes.

Those three things I gathered from the first videos to start out. Anything else recommended for beginners?
I came into it already in good shape, no injuries, and just trying to improve my current lifting regime. I tested the different exercises out, how many reps/sets and how often each week to do it. I am in my mid 40's so my recovery time is less. I also have back problems so I can easily over do it.

Right now I am doing this routine twice a week (then two other days a week I do upper body lifting):
- Reverse backwards uphill. 2 or 3 sets.
- Uphill sprints - 5 sets
- Jumping routine off all 4 plants - 3 or 4 with each plant
- Ramp board squats x1
- ATG Split squats x1
- Calve Raises x1
- Tib raises x1
- KOT Calve Raises x1
- Seated hyperextensions x1
- Stretching
 

r3d

Woodpecker
I came into it already in good shape, no injuries, and just trying to improve my current lifting regime. I tested the different exercises out, how many reps/sets and how often each week to do it. I am in my mid 40's so my recovery time is less. I also have back problems so I can easily over do it.

Right now I am doing this routine twice a week (then two other days a week I do upper body lifting):
- Reverse backwards uphill. 2 or 3 sets.
- Uphill sprints - 5 sets
- Jumping routine off all 4 plants - 3 or 4 with each plant
- Ramp board squats x1
- ATG Split squats x1
- Calve Raises x1
- Tib raises x1
- KOT Calve Raises x1
- Seated hyperextensions x1
- Stretching

Thanks. Do you do any specific stretching exercises that ATG recommends, or general flexibility? (I haven't seen him showing stretching exercises yet. Maybe I've missed them)


Personally, I'm only three days in and I can already feel a difference in my left problem knee. Too early to call it a miracle ofcourse, but something noticeable is happening. Very exciting!
 
Thanks. Do you do any specific stretching exercises that ATG recommends, or general flexibility? (I haven't seen him showing stretching exercises yet. Maybe I've missed them)


Personally, I'm only three days in and I can already feel a difference in my left problem knee. Too early to call it a miracle ofcourse, but something noticeable is happening. Very exciting!
The only comment I have seen from Ben on stretching is that he doesn't do a lot of it anymore because his lifts allow him to stretch while lifting. But that is due to his very advanced abilities in getting into a full stretch position.

One big stretch he does push is the elephant walk. Which is just a downward dog with each leg alternating a knee flex into a straight leg, back and forth, 50 times. I do this stretch along with general static stretches for my legs after finishing my workout.
 

r3d

Woodpecker

The man himself did a 3hr podcast as well.

I really think we should start another thread, naming it "Knees over toes guy Part 2 [If you have knee problems, get in here!!!]"

This information is just too valuable to be obscured behind the title. Many guys (like myself) may have given up on lifting or running because of their knees, so they won't click a thread that looks like it's discussing squat techniques.

If times weren't so turbulent we could ask Roosh to rename it, but I've heard he has been very sick recently and probably needs to focus on himself.

It_is_my_time ,what do you think? Do you want to do the honors? I could write up a summary for the OP if you don't have time.

Things I've learned over the last two days:

Apparently physicians did _placebo surgeries_ , I kid you not. Meaning they cut up a bunch of patients, but only performed the actually surgery on half of them. Then they watched for how everyone would recover and it turned out there is basically no difference between the groups.

How wild is that?

He also says that most people aren't aware of the latest research and everything he does is backed by science. So everyone can improve or even bulletproof their knee, even if they had surgery or the doctors say it's a hopeless case. (There might be exceptions, but there are literally thousands of testimonies that support his methods)

Also his off-the-cuff statement of "The goal is to get such a pump that you can't injure yourself" has had a huge impact on how I structure my training. Instead of doing the big lifts in the beginning, to maximize strength output, I put them in the middle or towards the end. Having pump (optimal blood flow) greatly reduces injury risk and I make it a point to start with 3x25 of at least two exercises that focus on muscle groups I will be needing that day.
Maybe that takes away 5% of my strenght for the big lifts, but if it means it lessens my risk of injury by 70% it's still a huge gain in the long run.

I'm only one week into his program and I can feel a major improvement in my knee stability.

This is life chaning stuff. A couple of months a ago I thought a bad knee and a bad shoulder meant that I can train at only half my potential for the rest of my life.
Now it turns out there is solution for just about anything.

It's not easy, I give you that. I've spent a hundred hours at least watching youtube physiotherapists and coaches by now. But if a healthy, strong physique isn't worth the effort, I don't know what is.
 
It would be Roosh's call if a 2nd thread should be started. Maybe if Roosh wants to just retitle this thread to your recommendation it would be better.

Yes there is two distinct ways of using his material. Simple training (how I use it and got involved) v. joint repair.

I will say though, I had nagging aging issues. My back would bother me so much. My feet would hurt if I walked too much, especially on concrete. Once in a while my shoulder would bother me from standing too long. I had knee issues when I was younger as well. I didn't come into the KOT program to fix any of these. I did it to try to find a way to get all the way down on squats and not hurt my back (ATG Split Squats).

But as a result of doing his workout all my little issues have disappeared and I feel like I am 15 years younger. I have more energy, I feel more positive, it reflects in how others treat me, and it has really changed my life.

So, I believe no matter your reason for starting this program, we will all have the same results of having better health/flexibility.
 

r3d

Woodpecker
It would be Roosh's call if a 2nd thread should be started. Maybe if Roosh wants to just retitle this thread to your recommendation it would be better.

Yes there is two distinct ways of using his material. Simple training (how I use it and got involved) v. joint repair.

I will say though, I had nagging aging issues. My back would bother me so much. My feet would hurt if I walked too much, especially on concrete. Once in a while my shoulder would bother me from standing too long. I had knee issues when I was younger as well. I didn't come into the KOT program to fix any of these. I did it to try to find a way to get all the way down on squats and not hurt my back (ATG Split Squats).

But as a result of doing his workout all my little issues have disappeared and I feel like I am 15 years younger. I have more energy, I feel more positive, it reflects in how others treat me, and it has really changed my life.

So, I believe no matter your reason for starting this program, we will all have the same results of having better health/flexibility.

Sure, we can leave it up for Roosh to decide. There is no hurry after all.

I'm really glad it has worked out so well for you. I would be happy beyond description if I could go back to squatting big weights with this knee program. So far it's looking good.
 
Sure, we can leave it up for Roosh to decide. There is no hurry after all.

I'm really glad it has worked out so well for you. I would be happy beyond description if I could go back to squatting big weights with this knee program. So far it's looking good.

Obviously due to my super long legs, age (mid 40's), and back issues, I don't plan to ever do a normal bar squat again.

But I really don't see a reason for bar squatting for a majority of people who workout. Unless you are trying to power lift and specifically do a squat lift or you are Olympic lifter, and you use high bar squats to work out of the hole, it seems a bar squat is just an inferior lift and injury waiting to happen.

Instead you can do ATG Split Squats with weight so light, or even none at all, taking out the risk of injury. You get a fuller range of motion, you get more stretch when you lift, which gives better results, you get more work on balance, and most of all you don't develop one leg stronger than the other. I have noticed one of my legs is still stronger than the other. But as they equal out in strength, my posture gets better and thus my back gets better.

I have heard that over the last 20+ years athletic trainers have been trying to train athletes on one leg as much as possible because sports are mostly played on one leg at a time. I think the ATG Split Squat bridges this gap more than anything else I could think of.
 

get2choppaaa

Ostrich
Obviously due to my super long legs, age (mid 40's), and back issues, I don't plan to ever do a normal bar squat again.

But I really don't see a reason for bar squatting for a majority of people who workout. Unless you are trying to power lift and specifically do a squat lift or you are Olympic lifter, and you use high bar squats to work out of the hole, it seems a bar squat is just an inferior lift and injury waiting to happen.

Instead you can do ATG Split Squats with weight so light, or even none at all, taking out the risk of injury. You get a fuller range of motion, you get more stretch when you lift, which gives better results, you get more work on balance, and most of all you don't develop one leg stronger than the other. I have noticed one of my legs is still stronger than the other. But as they equal out in strength, my posture gets better and thus my back gets better.

I have heard that over the last 20+ years athletic trainers have been trying to train athletes on one leg as much as possible because sports are mostly played on one leg at a time. I think the ATG Split Squat bridges this gap more than anything else I could think of.
Have completely different view on squats.

It comes down to form and learning how to brace/execution. No offense meant to you or others, but most people who share this opinion have never been properly taught to squat and have developed bad motor patterns as a result.

I have rehabbed my wife's knees with box squats and a vertical shin.

Forward knee position can also cause sheeting of the joints.

I appreciate the KOT guy, and think that full range of motion (not Extreme range of motion) Is valuable.
 

r3d

Woodpecker
I think it's a very individual thing.

I have heard many very respectable strength athletes say they don't squat, because the benefits don't outweigh the risks for them. Among them Jeff Cavalier. I don't think there is a single thing under the sun that guy doesn't know about lifting.

Personally, I really really enjoy squatting and that's just about the only reason I want to do it.

Though I will be much more careful than I used to. Diving deeper into bio mechanics and theory has led to me being more in tune with my body. I think today I'm much more able to sense when my form is good or bad.

We will see. It remains a lifelong learning process.
 

get2choppaaa

Ostrich
I think it's a very individual thing.

I have heard many very respectable strength athletes say they don't squat, because the benefits don't outweigh the risks for them. Among them Jeff Cavalier. I don't think there is a single thing under the sun that guy doesn't know about lifting.

Personally, I really really enjoy squatting and that's just about the only reason I want to do it.

Though I will be much more careful than I used to. Diving deeper into bio mechanics and theory has led to me being more in tune with my body. I think today I'm much more able to sense when my form is good or bad.

We will see. It remains a lifelong learning process.
Id be careful about citing Jeff cavalier. He aslo has videos where he's using fake weights and pretending they are real and been effectively called out on it... So i don't take him as seriously as many on his internet following do.

He's good about certain prehab and rehab hacks, but that's it in my book. I know he's got a couple baseba players who speak highly of him, but I wouldn't consider him the guru many do compared to folks like John Rusin or Louie Simmons (not just powerlifting but all sports) or Mark Rippetoe, or Dave Tate, or matt wenning or all of the Soviet strength coaches.

There's a reason why a majority of successful strength coaches use the big 3. They work when properly coached. Also lebron's 1/8th depth valgus knee squat is the perfect reason why athletes SHOULD squat through a complete range of motion (which is more in line with the KOT philosophy from what I have seen).

There is absolutely biological individually unique aspects to movement, but by and large a majority of people should be doing these movements since they are replications of basic human movement.
 

r3d

Woodpecker
Id be careful about citing Jeff cavalier. He aslo has videos where he's using fake weights and pretending they are real and been effectively called out on it... So i don't take him as seriously as many on his internet following do.

He's good about certain prehab and rehab hacks, but that's it in my book. I know he's got a couple baseba players who speak highly of him, but I wouldn't consider him the guru many do compared to folks like John Rusin or Louie Simmons (not just powerlifting but all sports) or Mark Rippetoe, or Dave Tate, or matt wenning or all of the Soviet strength coaches.

There's a reason why a majority of successful strength coaches use the big 3. They work when properly coached. Also lebron's 1/8th depth valgus knee squat is the perfect reason why athletes SHOULD squat through a complete range of motion (which is more in line with the KOT philosophy from what I have seen).

There is absolutely biological individually unique aspects to movement, but by and large a majority of people should be doing these movements since they are replications of basic human movement.

I didn't know that about him. That's embarassing of course and definitely a reason to take him less seriously as a whole. I know he became gimicky further down the line to make more cash, but his advice always checked out for me. Anyway.

The whole "Is squatting/DL'ing absolutely necessary?"-discussion is probably one of the most discussed topic in all of strength training, so there will be nothing new we bring to the table.

I agree with you, that unless there is a very good reason not to, you should do them if you want to be serious about getting big or strong. However, many have demonstrated that you can be VERY strong and look VERY good without them. So for guys like OP and me in their 30s and 40s it might not be worth the injury risk.
If you're 20 and you want to become one of the big boys, then there is probably no excuse to not do them.

Or maybe we shall agree to disagree. That's okay too. Let's get back to rehabbing our knees! :)
 

IM3000

Pelican
Just my add my 2 cents regarding squatting and DL'ing:

I injured my back playing basketball in my early twenties. This turned into re-occurring lumbago events. 1-3 times/year I'd be suffering from it, i.e. for a couple of days I hardly could move, severe pain, etc. Really debilitating and scary stuff, especially given my young age.
Went to an oldschool doctor and he advised that the only thing that would really help was strength training. I researched and started squatting and DL'ing. This was about 15 years ago and I never had an issue with my back again.
 
Just my add my 2 cents regarding squatting and DL'ing:

I injured my back playing basketball in my early twenties. This turned into re-occurring lumbago events. 1-3 times/year I'd be suffering from it, i.e. for a couple of days I hardly could move, severe pain, etc. Really debilitating and scary stuff, especially given my young age.
Went to an oldschool doctor and he advised that the only thing that would really help was strength training. I researched and started squatting and DL'ing. This was about 15 years ago and I never had an issue with my back again.

Your body/levers are obviously built to load a large amount onto a straight bar and squat down and back up with it again. That is great. Mine certainly is not. Sure, of course I can squat. But can my body remain in position while balancing a bar on my back while doing so? Not correctly. Can I deadlift a straight bar without it having to either travel through my knee cap or slightly moving my back out of place to completely the lift? No.

How many others can say this and will get hurt like myself without knowing it until it is too late? How many others have no plans to compete in a power lifting contest and can get better benefits by doing ATG Split Squats v. bar squats and deadlifts and on top of better benefits (I have done both and it isn't a comparison in benefits for me) but also reduce the risk of injury greatly.

That is my point. If you are young and trying to make the football team, thus you have the right body type most likely, maybe squats and deadlifts are better. Most football players are shorter limbed and bigger bodied which makes them proportioned for DL and Squats. If you are a power lifter. If you are an Olympic Lifter. Sure, then DL and squats are staples.

If you are Joe Schmoe who wants to get stronger/better shape, especially in a more functional way, the ATG Split Squat is not just safer, IMO it is superior. You still get the full load, you still get the range of motion, you take out the injury risk, but you get more balance work (balance and equal strength in each leg) and you get more flexibility in the range of motion. I squated and deadlifted for years, squatted itself for almost 3 decades with static stretching, and I have never had this balance and flexibility.

My point isn't to throw shade on people who squat and deadlift. My point isn't ego driven. My point is when you get older some things happen and it is a very beautiful process. Your sex drive slows down, your bank account fills up, and the struggles of your 20's and 30's dissipate. And you start to think, what can I share with those younger men going through what I went through. What can I share with them that I know now that I didn't know back then. What do I wish someone had told me 20 years ago that I can tell a guy in that position now.

And certainly one of those things is that I wish I knew about this program 30/20/even 5 years ago. I feel like I wasted decades trying the big lifts and only ended up with back issues, which are going way thanks to this program.

And I am not writing this to change your opinion or throw shade. If DLing and Squating work for you, please by all means do it. I am writing this for the young guy, who is thin and long limbed like me and struggling in the squat and deadlift and is reading through this thread can see the opposite view. That they don't have to risk the injury to jump higher or get better leg strength.

If you don't know which to try, I would recommend trying both methods (a few months squatting and deadlifting and a few months with just the ATG Split Squat) to see what you like better. If you are not certainly which you are built for. Are you over 6' tall and mostly arms and legs and not a great natural lifter, though maybe good at back pulling due to your long leverage? I recommend ATG Split Squats. If you are stockier, with shorter limbs and a bigger torso, built more like an American football player or Rugby player, then DL and Squats will likely work great for you.
 

IM3000

Pelican
Your body/levers are obviously built to load a large amount onto a straight bar and squat down and back up with it again. That is great. Mine certainly is not. Sure, of course I can squat. But can my body remain in position while balancing a bar on my back while doing so? Not correctly. Can I deadlift a straight bar without it having to either travel through my knee cap or slightly moving my back out of place to completely the lift? No.

How many others can say this and will get hurt like myself without knowing it until it is too late? How many others have no plans to compete in a power lifting contest and can get better benefits by doing ATG Split Squats v. bar squats and deadlifts and on top of better benefits (I have done both and it isn't a comparison in benefits for me) but also reduce the risk of injury greatly.

That is my point. If you are young and trying to make the football team, thus you have the right body type most likely, maybe squats and deadlifts are better. Most football players are shorter limbed and bigger bodied which makes them proportioned for DL and Squats. If you are a power lifter. If you are an Olympic Lifter. Sure, then DL and squats are staples.

If you are Joe Schmoe who wants to get stronger/better shape, especially in a more functional way, the ATG Split Squat is not just safer, IMO it is superior. You still get the full load, you still get the range of motion, you take out the injury risk, but you get more balance work (balance and equal strength in each leg) and you get more flexibility in the range of motion. I squated and deadlifted for years, squatted itself for almost 3 decades with static stretching, and I have never had this balance and flexibility.

My point isn't to throw shade on people who squat and deadlift. My point isn't ego driven. My point is when you get older some things happen and it is a very beautiful process. Your sex drive slows down, your bank account fills up, and the struggles of your 20's and 30's dissipate. And you start to think, what can I share with those younger men going through what I went through. What can I share with them that I know now that I didn't know back then. What do I wish someone had told me 20 years ago that I can tell a guy in that position now.

And certainly one of those things is that I wish I knew about this program 30/20/even 5 years ago. I feel like I wasted decades trying the big lifts and only ended up with back issues, which are going way thanks to this program.

And I am not writing this to change your opinion or throw shade. If DLing and Squating work for you, please by all means do it. I am writing this for the young guy, who is thin and long limbed like me and struggling in the squat and deadlift and is reading through this thread can see the opposite view. That they don't have to risk the injury to jump higher or get better leg strength.

If you don't know which to try, I would recommend trying both methods (a few months squatting and deadlifting and a few months with just the ATG Split Squat) to see what you like better. If you are not certainly which you are built for. Are you over 6' tall and mostly arms and legs and not a great natural lifter, though maybe good at back pulling due to your long leverage? I recommend ATG Split Squats. If you are stockier, with shorter limbs and a bigger torso, built more like an American football player or Rugby player, then DL and Squats will likely work great for you.
My comment wasn't intended to put down KOTG or his methods. In fact, I'm very much interested in them and have already incorporated some of his exercises like backwards uphill running and the nordic hamstrings to my workouts. This is thanks to you starting the thread, so much appreciated.

For the record, I'm 6'4'' with long arms. I never was a squat god but did and do DL in a respectable range. I agree that as you get older, you need to adjust your training. Closing in on 40, I do mostly lighter front squats and a lot of Bulgarian split squats these days.
 
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