MAVA is proud to bring you another post from Dr. Nick Hagen at IIP Lab. This week we deliver you some quick knowledge about KNEE COLLAPSE during the catch phase of your lifts!

Knees are rarely the cause of dysfunction but often are how dysfunction presents. If you lack ankle and hip mobility, your knees will collapse. If you lack core and hip strength, your knees will collapse. In the catch motion, one is absorbing high loads quickly which will exaggerate any dysfunction. Typically compensation patterns present as the knees diving inwards, the feet rotating out and collapsing, the pelvis or trunk rotating, and the low back rounding. The quick instruction of “knees out” can sometimes help by cuing hip muscles to activate. However, the hip strength is hardly the sole problem with movements. Over cuing “knees out” can lead to poor movement patterns, hip stiffness, and abnormal loading of the knee joint.

A great way to tease out dysfunction is to try an overhead unloaded squat to observe movement. This movement can help tease out thoracic (mid back)/hip/ankle mobility issues. Once mobility is cleared, a progressive loading of the catch position in lifts can allow for proper lifting and catching motions. A method to rule out core weakness is to unload the overhead squat and if the movement improves it’s likely a core stability issue.

TAKE HOME MESSAGE — Don’t ignore the knee collapse. Reduce load and if the catch phase of lifts still display knee collapse it is time to step back and evaluate the cause of the collapse (it’s not the knee).

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