The Knees Over Toes Guy

r3d

Woodpecker
Protestant
So, ive tried a million things, from stretching, to deadlifting through it. It obv depends on your issues, but something I didnt see, and helped me huge was doing back extensions on an exercise ball.It stretches the back, and works the glutes and hamstrings in a way nothing else apparently did. Go for 3 sets of 10 a day. I notice if I am diligent my back pain is gone, if I stop, my pain creeps in about a week down the road.
()


I tried them today and I must say there is definitely something to them. Crazy glute activation and I even felt my hamstrings quite a bit since they were sore from yesterday's legday.

I'll keep them for a while. Thanks for the tip.
 

Sword

Sparrow
Catholic
I tried them today and I must say there is definitely something to them. Crazy glute activation and I even felt my hamstrings quite a bit since they were sore from yesterday's legday.

I'll keep them for a while. Thanks for the tip.
Hey, let me know what you learn from them. I find the further 'up' the ball I start (ie have the ball pivot as close to your knees as you can) helps a lot. here is the other key that helps HUGE:
feel your glutes flexed the whole time. Grip your butt with your hands if you have to, but start up, fully flexed, go down until RIGHT before you lose flex, then go up and repeat. Its far different then doing full ROM without glutes truly kicking in. If you feel it in hamstrings you are on right track!
 

r3d

Woodpecker
Protestant
So everything sucks currently, so I thought I'd share at least something positive:

Training with ATG exercises is still going great. Even though I think I'm slacking just a little bit, it's still a world of difference. I even tried squatting again and it kinda went okay, but I did feel my problem knee giving off signals, so I stopped. Then I reflected for a while and thought about why I want to squat in the first place, and the answer is a little embarassing I guess, but it's really purely to look strong in the gym.
To me squatting and deadlifting is the stuff 'men' do and gym rats don't, so I really just want to be a part of that 'group'.

I guess everyone has their flaws, but realizing this at least made it possible to assess whether risking my knee health to attain that is worth it. The answer is obviously no.

ATG split squats I can do perfectly without any knee pain and really demolish those quads, so why would I choose a more risky exercise over them? Plus if I ever do ATG split squats with real heavy weights, that should look pretty cool too.

That's probably why pride is a sin. It makes you do stupid stuff that isn't in your best interest.

I'm at 85% of doing a perfect Ben-approved ATG split squat now. Weirdly enough on one side of my legs the very surface of my quads started burning like crazy when doing the exercise and going deep into the stretch. Not the muscles, but as if it were the skin or the fascia that is being torn. I powered through it the last two times but I'm thinking of giving it a little rest.

Stretches also coming along nicely. (Pidgeon and couch)

I don't know what I would've done without this knowledge. Probably injured myself again and quit lifting for good.

Bless you and Ben and everyone who shares it.

edit: Unfortunately I wasn't consistent with the bosu ball back extentions, so I don't have an update on those. Since I started deadlifting again and doing Ben's one-legged back extentions I don't have back problems anymore. And when it comes to my back I kind of go with 'if it ain't broke, don't fix it.'.
 

It_is_my_time

Crow
Protestant
So everything sucks currently, so I thought I'd share at least something positive:

Training with ATG exercises is still going great. Even though I think I'm slacking just a little bit, it's still a world of difference. I even tried squatting again and it kinda went okay, but I did feel my problem knee giving off signals, so I stopped. Then I reflected for a while and thought about why I want to squat in the first place, and the answer is a little embarassing I guess, but it's really purely to look strong in the gym.
To me squatting and deadlifting is the stuff 'men' do and gym rats don't, so I really just want to be a part of that 'group'.

I guess everyone has their flaws, but realizing this at least made it possible to assess whether risking my knee health to attain that is worth it. The answer is obviously no.

ATG split squats I can do perfectly without any knee pain and really demolish those quads, so why would I choose a more risky exercise over them? Plus if I ever do ATG split squats with real heavy weights, that should look pretty cool too.

That's probably why pride is a sin. It makes you do stupid stuff that isn't in your best interest.

I'm at 85% of doing a perfect Ben-approved ATG split squat now. Weirdly enough on one side of my legs the very surface of my quads started burning like crazy when doing the exercise and going deep into the stretch. Not the muscles, but as if it were the skin or the fascia that is being torn. I powered through it the last two times but I'm thinking of giving it a little rest.

Stretches also coming along nicely. (Pidgeon and couch)

I don't know what I would've done without this knowledge. Probably injured myself again and quit lifting for good.

Bless you and Ben and everyone who shares it.

edit: Unfortunately I wasn't consistent with the bosu ball back extentions, so I don't have an update on those. Since I started deadlifting again and doing Ben's one-legged back extentions I don't have back problems anymore. And when it comes to my back I kind of go with 'if it ain't broke, don't fix it.'.

When I turned 40, for my birthday I went out and bought a half squat, a bench, an Olympic bar with 300 lbs., all for about $500. It was the best investment I have made. It saves me so much time and stress trying to get to the gym and it take the ego out of everything. I lift less weight with better form and have way better results working out from home I would recommend avoiding gyms if possible, once you know what you are doing. The ego lifts and environment at most global gyms is poison.

I haven't given an update, so I might as well. The set of exercises Ben introduces has been life changing for me. I have never had a major injury, other than hurting my back deadlifting when I was 28 years old. No surgeries, nothing big, hardly even anything small. But since my late 30's I had more and more pain issues. I stretched every day, I lifted like I was told, I did regular bar squats, everything. And slowly it felt like my body was breaking down. My lower back was either in pain or felt like I had to be safe with it at all times. I had a pain in my right foot that would flare up at random times and cause me to limp until it went away. My shoulders would hurt at random times. I struggled to keep my posture good, so in place of it, I would wear a coat to sort of hide my not good posture. I would stretch everyday but my flexibility seemed to go no where. I chalked it all up to getting old.

I am now 8 months into doing the KOT lifts. I have not done a back squat since I started this routine. I can say all my pain is long gone. I have so much more energy because my pain is gone and my posture is back to where it should be. I am a decently tall guy, and with my good posture, women eye ball me like crazy. I feel like I am in my 20's again. I worked on my feet, walking over 8 miles a day for 3 days straight at my 2nd job and I never had any pain at all. I used to get migraines from wearing down and I don't even get those any longer. I am much more flexible, I think largely due to the ATG Split Squat which allows you to contract the muscle while stretching. I can run faster and jump higher. I wish I had found this 30 years ago. I believe with a system like this you never "age", you just stay fit and flexible until your body gives out due to extreme old age or some serious health concern when you are old, like cancer. I am so excited about the future that I used to dread.
 

It_is_my_time

Crow
Protestant
Hey everyone, while I have time this morning I want to give another update. I did my first sets of KOT exercises in early March 2021. So it has been almost 10 months now. I keep getting results. I am in my mid 40's and I am getting stronger at a lower body weight and the only thing I changed was adding in KOT exercises. A lot of self bragging here, but I want everyone to know the great results I have received from this program. I have tried nearly every program under the sun going back to the early 1990's and this has been the most beneficial for me. It might be because I am old and have long limbs and a small torso that I am having such great results from this program. Or maybe everyone can get great results from this program as well. I can only highly recommend it based on my results.

#1) I have never paid for the program. I am not a paid shill or a customer trying to sell others. I only watched KOT Guy's videos and put in exercises I felt would benefit me the most and I have experimented over time with what seems to benefit me the most. I have dropped some things over time and added others. I don't necessarily recommend buying the program, I got enough of it for free from his Youtube videos, but at the same time I am not saying "don't buy it". I am saying try out some of the exercises, work them into your current routine and see what you think of it. Go from there. Start slowly, very slowly.

#2) My flexibility has greatly improved. I started stretching around the time I turned 30. Mostly to lessen back pain. I did something to my lower back deadlifting when I was 28 and I was never able to deadlift again. Over time the pain got worse and I turned to static stretches to help. Over time I did get more flexible and the pain subsided for the most part. But as I entered my mid 40's it seemed to be a losing battle. My flexibility was decreasing despite doing stretches and my back pain was returning. I even once mentioned to my mom that I was "slowly becoming disabled due to my back pain which would ensure I could never do manual labor for more than a few hours every few days".

10 months on this program I am far more flexible than ever before. My back pain is almost completely gone. I have to REALLY push it for it to come back and even then it is gone again by the next day. I have to routinely step over a 3 foot fence at my weekend job. I don't have to do so, it just saves time walking around the fence. I can straddle the fence with ease because my inseam is 36". But getting my legs high enough was always a struggle. Now I can do a scissor kick over it with great ease. So much so some people have seen me do it and ask if I do martial arts. With my back pain gone I have been able to double my hours at my 2nd job and pull in more money.

#3) My strength has improved. Each week I seem to get one more rep on my KOT sets or I am able to climb weight. I have never done this before. When I started I could barely squat a few times on a ramp board. Today I did 6 reps with a 45 lbs. bar in a front squat rack position.

I added in pushups with 8" under each hand so that when I touch the ground with my chest I am at a full shoulder flex. Due to this, my bench press when has been the same for years on end, has slightly increased. I didn't expect this, I just wanted more shoulder flexibility. I have only been doing this for about a month, maybe my gains are now ceiled again, but I never expected to gain from it.

My post is certainly not to brag, living in pride is sinful. My body will age and I will lose all this. That is fine, I just want to be as active as I can, for as long I can, so if I have kids I can play with them and not just be an "old dad".

I just want to share this information with all of you. I struggled for almost 30 years in the weight room. Watching beginners zoom past me on the big lifts within a month or two due to genetics. I struggled for almost 15 years with back pain, wondering if one day if I would need a cane before I met a wife. I now feel I am reaching my genetic potential and the lack of pain is one of the greatest gifts I have been given. I want to share this gift with everyone here.

Thank you for reading.
 

The Beast1

Peacock
Orthodox Inquirer
Gold Member
Maybe just me, but is ATG squatting not the norm? When I squat, I've always gone that low for as long as I remember. It doesn't feel natural to stop at parallel.

I also have some adipowers my wife got me years ago. I can't squat heavy without them.
 

It_is_my_time

Crow
Protestant
Maybe just me, but is ATG squatting not the norm? When I squat, I've always gone that low for as long as I remember. It doesn't feel natural to stop at parallel.

I also have some adipowers my wife got me years ago. I can't squat heavy without them.

I'm not an expert, but growing up I never saw anyone squat much below parallel (granted this was the 1980's and 90's and not much was known back then). Not that we were taught right, but it seemed it was normal to get to parallel and go back up. Granted there is a lot of fighting back and forth on this. Searching on "ATG v. Power Lifting Squat" I came to the conclusion that ATG is probably better but your weight will not look as impressive. Doing more research it seems it depends on how deep your hips are set into your hip sockets and your leg v. torso length. Which is why Asian/Slavic people are kings of the Olympic Lifts and are known to do the squat thing rather than just sitting down. I think it is far easier/more comfortable for them.

I have extremely long legs, so if I back squat I only feel it in my lower back (low bar) or my quads (high bar/front squat). It wasn't until I did the KOT ATG Split Squat that I actually felt the squat in my glutes and hamstrings. It was like a light bulb going off over my head. Ah ha, this is what they mean by squats build glutes. I never really felt squats in my glutes before.

In the end, I recommend what feels comfortable and gives you results. I just want to share my results here because I struggled for so many years and I don't want the other good men to have to struggle for so long for something so simple. But hopefully most here are not built like a scarecrow, like myself, and the tradition bar squat/deadlift works for you :p :)
 

r3d

Woodpecker
Protestant
Maybe just me, but is ATG squatting not the norm? When I squat, I've always gone that low for as long as I remember. It doesn't feel natural to stop at parallel.

I also have some adipowers my wife got me years ago. I can't squat heavy without them.

Measured against the general population, it's definitely not the norm. But good for you that it's been working for such a long time. It seems to have great benefits. Also lifting shoes really help a lot and most people don't have them.

@It_is_my_time

Don't worry about boasting. Everyone who followed the thread knows that you don't mean to brag but rather highlight the benefits of the program, because you believe it can help people. Pride is sin, but sharing enthusiasm about life most definitely isn't. It's valuable information to know what these exercises have done for you.

Personally, I have had a slight setback. Unfortunately, when stretching for the ATG splitsquat I seem to have overdone it. The top of my quadriceps (in the leg that stands behind) started burning like fire out of nowhere one time. Hasn't gone away since, even after a whole month of rest. It's like my fascia is tearing and it feels like that on the complete surface of the quads. Nothing I have ever felt before with stretches. It's not the muscle or ligaments, but rather the skin it feels. Super weird. Gonna go ask some experts soon.

The good news is that it forced me to build a slantboard. Now I can do standard ATG squats and from what I gather it's the same benefit for the knees. Just not as good for flexibility and core strength as the ATG split squat.
 

It_is_my_time

Crow
Protestant
I am about 6 weeks away from my one year anniversary of starting this thread and I am going to try something for the next 6 weeks, at least as best as I can with a potential busy schedule causing me to move things around. I am going to try to workout 5 times a week, for about 30 minutes per lifting session. Maybe up to 40 minutes if I take longer breaks. I have been doing 4 workouts a week, and I think I can break up my leg workout into 3 sessions and get more good out of it. I am pushing past 1 hour on these sessions and I think it might be more beneficial to make it shorter and more focused.

The results of doing these lifts has not only been amazing, but has allowed me to work longer hours on the weekends and make more money. I am considering buying a sled with some of the extra money I have been able to make. My past back pain is mostly gone and I have far less pain and stiffness than before. I no longer feel like I am in my 40's and fragile, I feel more like I did in my early 30's, not bullet proof, but very active and able to go a lot more often and for longer distances.

Here is what I will try the next 6 weeks...

Monday
- Warm up exercises (hip movements, jump rope, vertical jump, etc.)
- Slant board squat x1
- ATG Split Squat x 2
- Calve raises (extended/tibialis/kot) go through each in a row
- Hip Flexor Raises x1
- Hamstring kick backs (Jefferson curls) x1
- Calve raises (extended/tibialis/kot) go through each in a row
- One leg hyperextensions x1
- Stretching and Abs

Tuesday
- Bench Press x1
- Pull Ups x1
- Elevated (under hands) pushups x1
- Back Rows x1
- Military DB x1
- Curls x1
- Chest Flies x1
- Delt DB Raises x1

Wednesday - Repeat Monday's workout

Thursday - Rest

Friday - Repeat Tuesday's workout and do abs

Saturday - Run uphill sprints and do max jumping drills (off all four plants) then stretch. Basically explode as much as I can until I get tired. Probably about 7 or 8 uphill sprints and 5 or 6 max jumps off all four plants. When my explosion slows down it is time to stop and stretch.

Sunday - Rest
 

It_is_my_time

Crow
Protestant
One year update. I think most of what I would say has already been said in this thread, especially in the last few posts I have made here. I still have not signed up or paid for the program. I believe it would not benefit me as much as it would to do what feels right for myself. I am not selling a service or recommending you pay for a service.

This program has been life changing. I started lifting weights in 1993. 29 years ago this month as my basketball season came to an end. Everyone told me I was "too skinny" and that I "needed to lift". The overall advances in training in the last 29 years has been pretty big. I have tried every program under the sun. Starting strength, 5x5, power lifting, Olympic lifting, plyometrics, etc, etc. Some things worked better than others, but I never found the sweet spot. Once I hurt my back deadlifting it became more about just finding what I could do without causing back pain.

After starting this program, even though I knew I was getting great results, I still believed it would be another quick ceiling and I was not 100% bought in. I even told my mom that I was "halfway disabled between my back and my too long of legs" in response to me finding a job where I was on my feet and not depressed at a desk starring at a screen all day long. This was about the same time I started this program. I just had no where else to go and for the first time I really looked forward to training, so I stuck with it.

The ceiling never came.. I pretty much start any new program and within a month I hit a ceiling. The advances simply stop. I grind on for months afterwards with no improvements and then eventually I go down in numbers due to being tired or burned out. This is the first time ever that I can see improvement week over week.

I no longer feel partially disabled. I never have back pain. I can jump higher than I have in over a decade. I will list the ways this has been life changing...

#1) My back pain is gone. This allows me to feel free to do so many more things. I was able to pick up extra hours at a weekend job that is on my feet and active. Over the past year I would estimate I have made an extra $5,000 that I would not have made otherwise.

#2) I am more flexible than ever before. I used to do a lot of static stretching to get more flexible and to relieve my back pain. The KOT lifts do a better job of making my body more flexible than static stretching did. Ben himself says he never stretches because the program itself will do that for you.

#3) Due to my back pain being gone I feel like I am young again. My posture has improved greatly. I feel light on my feet. And then this good feeling spreads through my entire being. I get hit on by women a lot. And it is often the same compliments.. "you smile so much", "you move so gracefully" it is very humbling. I am blessed to have this in my life, after years of thinking about how to buy a wife. I still can't date because I hate my full time job, but need the job to pay my bills, but I realize there is a world of opportunity where I used to think none existed.

#4) A lot of stress in my life is gone. Between the home gym and this program, I no longer feel rushed to get to the gym. Then once at the gym rushed to get the right equipment before someone else hogs the squat rack. I no longer feel stressed to "I can't mow my lawn this day because I want to squat and not hurt my back". Or "I must sleep a certain way so my back is fresh to squat tomorrow". This program takes so little equipment and time.

#5) I started to really watched full range of motion in my upper body. Pull ups all the way down to a near lock out position. Pushups on a stack of books. As a result I was sold at how much better my shoulders felt and how for the first time ever I could finally see deltoid development. I went out and bought a 40 lbs. weight vest and some push up bars. Throw in some 5 lbs. ankle weights I already owned and a place to do pull ups and a place to run and jump and I could do my entire program and not miss a beat. I do bench and use the bar for ramp board front squats, but I could certainly get by without it.

I hope this inspires others to find what works for them, whatever that may be, and can bring about peace and confidence to your life that I spent decades searching for.
 

It_is_my_time

Crow
Protestant
I’m interested in this, which video or playlist of his should I start with? There’s a lot of content and I don’t know where to begin.
I am sure by now there are a lot of videos. The good thing is most the information repeats over time and I think he just gets excited and does a video over something he covered a month or two before.

I would start with any video that discusses the ATG Split Squat. I think it is the main staple of the workout. Ben loves nordics, but they are a very advanced lift that I still cannot perform without assistance so I instead do one leg hyperextensions on my squat rack using the bar as the hinge point.
 

It_is_my_time

Crow
Protestant
Thank you!
Also, walking backwards, especially uphill and working up to pulling a sled backwards is highly recommended by him and the people who have done the program.

I don't have a sled, so I walk backwards uphill with a 20 lbs. weight vest to warm up on the days I get outside.

Ramp board squats are interesting as well but they are pretty intense on the knee, so starting with the ATG Split Squat is probably better. He explains how you can progress from the front foot elevated and just body weight up to a front squat and your front foot on the floor. I am to the point I use the 20 lbs. vest to do ATG Split squats and I started with my front foot elevated on a yellow book and body weight only.
 

It_is_my_time

Crow
Protestant
My workout is much the same as I posted above on Feb. 8th. The only difference is I have removed the knee raises and Jefferson curls and replaced them with seated good mornings. I just recently replaced seated good mornings with standing good mornings to see which I like better.

To be honest, I think I might be over doing it in my mid 40's. But I am staying with this for now. I might take out ramp board squats on one of my workouts.

This is the video that sticks out the most in my mind of all his videos. It is Ben's mom discussing how the workout has changed her life in her 60's and how much better she feels. If I can bend and move like her at 67, then I have been super blessed. My mom and dad couldn't do these things at 67 and they were both very active. It also shows how she progressed with the ATG Split Squat.

 
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MichaelWitcoff

Hummingbird
Orthodox
Somehow, despite my very limited hip flexor mobility, the ATG split squat isn’t a problem for me mechanically. I’ve done split squats in the past so maybe that’s why, but I was surprised to try this new version and find that I could do it. The good mornings are a different question though. In either case I don’t think I’m going to do power squats the way I have been, it feels like an injury waiting to happen.
 

It_is_my_time

Crow
Protestant
Somehow, despite my very limited hip flexor mobility, the ATG split squat isn’t a problem for me mechanically. I’ve done split squats in the past so maybe that’s why, but I was surprised to try this new version and find that I could do it. The good mornings are a different question though. In either case I don’t think I’m going to do power squats the way I have been, it feels like an injury waiting to happen.
You might be able to start adding weight right away to the ATG Split Squat. I think Ben uses half his body weight and does like 10 reps. I will never get close to that, that is incredibly strong. There are also ramp board squats, which is really tough on the knees.

I can understand about feeling like a power squat is an injury waiting to happen. Placing 400 lbs. on your vertebrae and squatting up and down for 50 years doesn't seem like something most people can do. Some people are blessed genetically to do it, but I know I am not one of them. I was really struggling with the squat. My back kept bothering me, but when I did high bar back squats my back would still bother me or my knees would kill me. And that was at some pretty light weight like 135 lbs. That is when I started to research to see what to do and came across this system last spring.
 
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