Ben Patrick: Knees Over Toes Guy | MiFit Podcast with DJ Hillier

Check out the MiFit Podcast show notes & episode page

Key Takeaways

  • Backwards walking and backwards sled drags are key to building more resilient knees
    • Less risk and more accessible: With squats or other compact lifts, you must move the weight or the weight moves you. With the sled, you just move the weight or you don’t.
    • Benefits: Every time you’re slowly building up strength and circulation. Tendons and ligaments take much longer to see positive change.
  • Without motion and compression, your joints won’t get all the nutrients they need
    • Otherwise, your body assumes your joints don’t need them
    • Pain is an opportunity to get better. Identify it and act. Avoiding it will only make it worse.
  • Exercise and Physical Therapy don’t have to be two separate things
    • Continue reading for more about the “Knees Over Toes Guy” routine

Intro

  • Ben Patrick AKA “Knees Over Toes Guy” (@kneesovertoesguy) is a coach and the owner of Athletic Truth Group (ATG) Online Coaching, an online personal training program for strengthening knees, developing full-body fitness, and improving longevity. His new book ATG for Life is available now.
  • Ben Patrick speaks with DJ Hillier about how everyone from athletes to the elderly can benefit from his knees over toes program.
  • Host: DJ Hillier (@deejayhillier)

Who is the Knees Over Toes Guy?

  • Grew up playing basketball as a kid. A combination of overtraining and bad genetics caused him to have chronic knee pain by the age of 12.
    • Suffered from this until he was 20
  • Was always told to never let his knees over his toes because it will only do more damage. But, an Olympic coach changed the narrative for Ben:
    • “The athlete’s knee that can go farthest over the toes has the least chance at injury. And since then, it’s been my journey.” – Ben Patrick
  • “The body can do a lot of adaptation if you find the right route” – Ben Patrick

Origins of Backwards Walking & Benefits of the Sled

  • Backwards walking naturally forces your knees over your toes
    • Asian cultures have a long history of backwards walking for physical longevity
    • Ben also sites that the Finnish people have developed strong knees by working in the forest industry and dragging trees backwards
    • Both cultures must have been onto something because backward walking prevents cartilage breakdown
  • Louie Simmons popularized the idea that a sled is a form of exercise
    • With squats or other compact lifts, you must move the weight or the weight moves you. With the sled, you just move the weight or you don’t.
    • Reduces risk of injury and is more accessible to people of all strengths and ages
  • Want to get started? Start with backwards sled drags.
    • Make slow progress. Every time you’re building up strength and circulation. Tendons and ligaments take much longer to see positive change.
    • Start with enough weight to slow you down, but not too much weight that you’re unable to get natural steps – “feel the burn without pain”
    • If you can’t find a gym, Ben recommends TANK sleds by Torque Fitness

Range of Motion

Top 3 Exercises to Improve Your Vertical

  • Backwards sled: This allows you to get stronger in the most pain-free way. Jumping is very forceful, you don’t make progress when you’re in pain all the time.
  • ATG split squat: Addresses weak lower body issues. Gives mobility and strength.
  • Nordic hamstring curl: This is your primary power producer. The hamstring harnesses the power of your hips. Unlock your full potential.

Closing Thoughts

  • Exercise and Physical Therapy don’t have to be two separate things
  • Pain is an opportunity to get better
    • Identify your weak points rather than avoiding them
    • Ben wishes people would use tools like the sled instead of instantly jumping to painkillers

Related Notes

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Notes By Drew Waterstreet

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