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Recumbent What IS that thing?! Recumbents may be odd looking, but they have many advantages over a "wedgie" bicycle. Discuss the in's and out's recumbent lifestyle in the recumbent forum.

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Old 12-26-11, 12:35 PM   #1
kilerb
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Quad Strengthening....

Hi guys... Here's a post I made months ago... http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...e-for-Exercise

Was posted in the wrong section... I've learned more since. I want to do something ASAP... I also should have been more detailed when I initially posted. From what I can tell, my quads are what have ended up being weak. Calves a little too. But quads primarily. If there is a step to climb up that is higher than average (Like 2 feet) I pretty much need a hand to get up it. If i'm on one knee. I can get up without using my hands. Those are my strength issues. It's because I've always walked a little differently. I don't bend my knees like I am supposed to. My achilles tendon was not the right length and that's why I had the surgery. To lengthen it. So, I know this is not a physical therapy board, but will a stationary or regular bike strengthen that muscles and help me be able to climb higher stairs and get up when I'm on the ground? That's my concern. I've tried the gym. I have a membership. I go a few weeks, then it ends. I just have so many things going on and having a stationary bike would be something I could do every day at home. Suggestions and thoughts appreciated!

Thanks!
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Old 12-26-11, 01:47 PM   #2
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I was wondering just the same thing whilst struggling to get up a hill this morning. I hope we get some good answers here.

I'm guessing that leg presses would be good and squats probably bad, but that pretty much depletes me of whatever thoughts I might have about it.
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Old 12-26-11, 01:58 PM   #3
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I was wondering just the same thing whilst struggling to get up a hill this morning. I hope we get some good answers here.

I'm guessing that leg presses would be good and squats probably bad, but that pretty much depletes me of whatever thoughts I might have about it.
Yeah, I'd have the same problem on a hill.... I was reading online today about recumbent bikes vs. elliptical machines... Read somewhere that the bikes are better for strength, especially if you turn the tension up.
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Old 12-26-11, 09:26 PM   #4
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You interested in recumbent exercise machines or recumbent bicycles? Turning the tension up sounds like gym equipment.
Not sure what muscles elliptical machines work on, but bicycles generally work the quads more than running or walking.

If you're looking for equipment to use at home, I'd try both recumbent and upright gym bikes and see what seems to work best.
You've already tried physical therapy?
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Old 12-27-11, 01:07 PM   #5
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I've had knee problems for 30+ years. Many surgeries, then my left knee was replaced back in 2009. Right hip replaced in 2011. Been through a *lot* of PT. Am not any kind of doctor. But after my knee replacement we found that one muscle (or a part of one muscle) was not even building tension as it should. The PT DR gave me some 8-11 different exercises just to help bring back my left knee. Sure, riding a stationary bike will help, but that can be more about overall strength and cardio, than about the 'quads' themselves.

As I am only a guy with bad knees, and not a PT DR, I can't tell you the *best* ways to strengthen your quads like a DR could, and going to a good one would be my best advice. That said, many exercises can be done from a chair, the floor, or your bed. Straight leg lifts, lift and hold, squeezing and holding the quads, and much more of the same... learning to simply tighten the quads alone takes practice for many people.

I can not (nor should others) tell you what exercises are correct for *you*, and if you start doing the wrong ones for *you*, you can hurt yourself.

An 'elliptical machine', doing 'squats', stair-stepping, just to name a few *can* do wonders for both the quads and upper leg muscles. A stationary bike is boring as hell if you've not spent 30 minutes daily for a year on one...actual hill climbing while riding is great for both cardio and leg muscles - but again, doing stuff willy-nilly - you could hurt yourself badly, and possibly do damage to your knees. This is why seeing a PT Doc is a great idea.

Good luck to you
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Old 12-27-11, 03:09 PM   #6
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I think you're still in the wrong section if you're looking at stationary bikes. For building quads,weights are still best.
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Old 12-27-11, 03:16 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Dudelsack View Post
I was wondering just the same thing whilst struggling to get up a hill this morning. I hope we get some good answers here.

I'm guessing that leg presses would be good and squats probably bad, but that pretty much depletes me of whatever thoughts I might have about it.
I too need some answers. I suck(!) at climbing. Can't be out of the saddle for any length of time before it feels as if someone is jacking knives in my legs. I know I cannot do squats as my knees are old and worn out.
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Old 12-27-11, 06:24 PM   #8
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I think the best non-cycling exercise you can to for hill-climbing is running stairs. Most of us can afford to lose some weight, too; which will also help. But I've never been better than mediocre at hill-climbing, so my advice is not worth what you're paying for it. If your knees are old and worn-out, recumbents are not a panacea - they're just as hard on your knees as uprights.
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Old 12-28-11, 09:02 AM   #9
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If your knees are old and worn-out, recumbents are not a panacea - they're just as hard on your knees as uprights.
Except for the fact that most bent riders will spin uphill rather than mash, since we can't stand on the pedals like a DFer can. Spinning is loads easier on knees than mashing.
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Old 12-29-11, 01:19 PM   #10
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Except for the fact that most bent riders will spin uphill rather than mash, since we can't stand on the pedals like a DFer can. Spinning is loads easier on knees than mashing.
You're implying that upright riders can't spin? Your note about not standing acknowledges that NOT spinning is even more detrimental to us than it is to upright riders; but that doesn't mean they can't spin, too.

Put simply, recumbents are no easier on knees than uprights, and are potentially worse if you're not using good form.
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