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Inner Thigh Toner (Hear me out...)


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I'm looking for good bodyweight exercises that help to strengthen and tone the inner thighs. Hear me out - this isn't a whiny "I want to spot tone" thread. So here's what's going on:

 

I've gone to PT twice (over 2 years) for the same problem. Honestly I was doing great the first time around. Then I started to slip. Then I just didn't do it at all. I figured "nah, I'll just do stuff at the gym and that'll cover both bases!" Wrong. The second time around that I went to PT they told me I still have the same defect essentially, but I found out what is actually causing it and what I can do to fix it.

 

My kneecaps both track to the outsides of my legs. In this case, they click when I bend them like going up or down stairs, and often results in a sharp pain starting in front under the patellar groove and moving up over the patella to the outside of my thigh. It hurts, it's painful, it's with me everyday and it causes me to make more excuses why I can't do things. (FYI my mantra for this year is "No more excuses") I practice Aikido and there is a LOT of kneeling, rolling, getting up, falling down, and movement that aggravates it. The problem apparently is that I have weak inner thigh muscles, and strong outer thigh muscles. The stronger ones pull the tendons, which pull my kneecaps to the outside. I have to strengthen the inner ones. So in my head when I was told that I'm thinking "No s*** Sherlock, I'm over weight, I'm soft in most areas...and that's one of the hardest places to tone!" <_<

 

I'm honestly looking for help to build on the exercises that I received in physical therapy (PT). The PT exercises are helpful, slightly, but I don't feel that they are really targeting the problem; rather just preventing it from getting worse. I've Googled some stuff, but I'm not so sure what's going to help. So far I'm in love with squats, they don't hurt me as bad as a lunge does and it works a ton of muscles. But....what are my other options?

60Whiskey – “That others may live”

Race: Lycan // Class: Monk // Faction: Havik

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Your best option is to do your PT, as prescribed, and talk to your doctor about your concerns.  No amount of armchair advise over the internet, no matter how well intentioned, can compare to a face-to-face meeting with a medical professional.  They put in the time and got the degree, so they're the experts.  If you honestly believe that your doctor isn't listening to your concerns and you aren't seeing improvement, it's time to start looking for a new doctor.  There are somethings the internet just can't help with, and unfortunately, this is one of those issues.

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Anim07734; God of Death in Training

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Maxim 70: Failure is not an option. It is mandatory. The option is whether or not to let failure be the last thing you do.

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Patella instability is a tricky issue. I agree with Anim that the best thing is to see a medical professional in person. Even if a medical professional was present on the forums, it would be difficult for them to impart their knowledge effectively through forum posts.

 

However there are some important things to point out in your original post. Your "inner thigh" muscles usually means a group of muscles called the adductors. These muscles don't actually attach to your patella. So strengthening them would do nothing to alter your patella tracking.

 

When your PT and doctor say you have relatively weak inner thigh and relatively strong outer thigh muscles they are referring to the 4 muscle bellies of your quadriceps muscle. Specifically they mean to say that you have relatively weak vastus medialis and relatively strong vastus lateralis muscles.

 

You want to be strengthening your Vastus Medialis muscle (also sometimes referred to as Vastus Medialis Oblique). If your PT is worth his salt, he should definitely be doing this and also explaining what he is doing to you. You should actively be looking out for the VMO muscle activating during your PT sessions. If you learn to do this, you can alter almost any exercise which involves knee extension to strongly active the VMO - thus training and strengthening it.

 

To get you started - here is a link I googled just then which seems to have decent advice re: VMO exercises - 

 

http://www.sportsorthopaedicspecialist.co.uk/rehabilitation/vmo-exercises

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Strengthening your adductors do help with knee pain. 

 

Here is an article with some stuff you can do. I love Crossfit and have really crappy knees (chondromalacia patellae) and doing some of these exercises have really helped me.

 

https://breakingmuscle.com/learn/5-simple-solutions-for-anterior-knee-pain

 

 

A good exercise that targets only the adductos is this one (you'll need a resistance band):

 

 

 

 

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Thanks for the

On ‎1‎/‎11‎/‎2017 at 3:57 PM, Anim07734 said:

Your best option is to do your PT, as prescribed, and talk to your doctor about your concerns.  No amount of armchair advise over the internet, no matter how well intentioned, can compare to a face-to-face meeting with a medical professional.  They put in the time and got the degree, so they're the experts.  If you honestly believe that your doctor isn't listening to your concerns and you aren't seeing improvement, it's time to start looking for a new doctor.  There are somethings the internet just can't help with, and unfortunately, this is one of those issues.

I did see and speak to the doctor and therapist. I am continuing the PT, but it just doesn't seem to do much.

60Whiskey – “That others may live”

Race: Lycan // Class: Monk // Faction: Havik

Challenge: Alpha, Beta

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On ‎1‎/‎12‎/‎2017 at 6:12 AM, Yuen said:

Patella instability is a tricky issue. I agree with Anim that the best thing is to see a medical professional in person. Even if a medical professional was present on the forums, it would be difficult for them to impart their knowledge effectively through forum posts.

 

However there are some important things to point out in your original post. Your "inner thigh" muscles usually means a group of muscles called the adductors. These muscles don't actually attach to your patella. So strengthening them would do nothing to alter your patella tracking.

 

When your PT and doctor say you have relatively weak inner thigh and relatively strong outer thigh muscles they are referring to the 4 muscle bellies of your quadriceps muscle. Specifically they mean to say that you have relatively weak vastus medialis and relatively strong vastus lateralis muscles.

 

You want to be strengthening your Vastus Medialis muscle (also sometimes referred to as Vastus Medialis Oblique). If your PT is worth his salt, he should definitely be doing this and also explaining what he is doing to you. You should actively be looking out for the VMO muscle activating during your PT sessions. If you learn to do this, you can alter almost any exercise which involves knee extension to strongly active the VMO - thus training and strengthening it.

 

To get you started - here is a link I googled just then which seems to have decent advice re: VMO exercises - 

 

http://www.sportsorthopaedicspecialist.co.uk/rehabilitation/vmo-exercises

So basically that's the only explanation they gave me. Weak muscles, tracking poorly. Basically all they told me to do was strengthen the inner thigh. Do some leg presses, which I do a ton of consistently. I feel like I'm just not getting some good answers from them. Thanks for the link. I'll continue to do some squats, try to add resistance band exercises and see if I can get any answers from my doctor for the third time.

60Whiskey – “That others may live”

Race: Lycan // Class: Monk // Faction: Havik

Challenge: Alpha, Beta

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well, find a new Dr and a new PT :-)  having said that, I would sit down and place my foot on the ground.  put the 9 points of the feet firmly on the ground (heel, outside edge, little ball, big ball, and each toe) one at a time so you can feel what each one feels like.  Find out what having your foot on the ground firmly actually feels like (most people have never paid attention to how their foot feels when it is on the ground).  Once you have that, press down equally on the  9 points (still seated), then take your hand and feel the muscles in your quads.  Slowly roll the foot in and out, towards the arch and back out to the outer edge.  Feel how each of the 4 quads engage and disengage.  Once you can actually feel what is going on, then you can start to understand why what you are doing is or is not working.  You can pay attention to how foot placement engages the muscles differently depending on position, then ensure your exercises are working the correct muscles.  Oh yes, get a pick of the anatomy of the leg so you can see the muscle structures.

Just because I am right, does not mean I am RIGHT, or that you are wrong.

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