Now many people view me as nothing but a muscle-building superhero, and yes, most of those assumptions are true. But there is a big brain underneath this funny red mask, and it’s constantly firing on all cylinders, especially after a double shot of espresso after a day of fasting…
But that’s a story for another day.
Why the VMO is so Cool
Today I want to talk about a very unconventional way to deal with specific knee issues. I just wanted an excuse to talk about the cool-looking VMO or vastus medialis to all you anatomy buffs.
I like the VMO because it’s fantastic to see popping out when standing, walking, or running. It’s a sign that you’re a true gym rat and love to train. But besides being a relaxed muscle, it serves a purpose, mainly to extend the lower leg and partly to stabilize the kneecap.
Now for some people who have an unstable knee cap or suffer from Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome (PFPS), this can signify a weak and under-developed VMO. However, some believe it is more of a weakness of the extensor muscles of the hip, such as the glutes. Either way, it can still be treatable. The problem with PFPS is that it causes pain with any squatting activity, stepping up onto steps, kicking down a door to catch an evil goon… basically doing the usual stuff in everyday life.
This can sometimes cause an issue with rehabilitation exercises and limit the amount you can perform.
Great Rehab Tool for Your VMO and Knee
However, one piece of equipment will allow you to rehab your knee, build up your VMO and get you in excellent shape all at once.
They feared and respected dragging a sled.
How to Make a $30 Dragging Sled
If purchased online, traditional dragging sleds would cost you around $200. But I’m going to show you how to make your own for less than $30.
The first thing you’re going to have to do is head to a local gas station or mechanics shop. You’re simply going to walk in and ask to talk to the manager or owner and ask if you can take a spare tire they weren’t using off of their hands.
If they give you a problem, say it’s for your kid’s school project.
Most of the time, the guy will give you a beat-up tire without a problem. If he says no, kick him in the chest, as long as your PFPS is not acting up.
They’ll give you an old, beat-up tire if you ask nicely.
So now that you have your tire, you’re going to head to the closest home-improvement store.
You will pick up a 3×3 piece of recycled wood, 30 feet of boat rope, electrical tape, and six bolts and screws.
That’s it. It shouldn’t set you back more than $30 for everything.
How to Make a Superhero Dragging Sled:
- Cut the wood into a long octagonal shape (if you failed geometry, that means eight sides).
- Once that’s done, sand it down on the top and bottom.
- Drill three holes in the front of the tire and back on opposite sides. This is where your bolts are going to go.
- Now match up your tire on the piece of wood that you just cut and make off where the holes are.
- Drill those six holes through your piece of wood.
- Align the tire up on top of your wooden sled and screw the nuts and bolts. Make sure they are tight, so there’s no movement or shaking. This can increase the size of the holes over time, causing a split in the tire.
- Drill two holes in the front of the tire around eight inches apart. This is where you’re going to thread your boat rope through.
- Take your boat rope and tie off the ends with electrical tape. This will prevent shredding over time with usage.
- Also, measure off the halfway point of your boat rope and thread electrical tape around that part. You want to protect the string from the metal filaments in the tire, which will shred it to pieces with usage over time.
- Now thread your boat rope through the tire, and you should be good to go!
Okay, your sled is all made up. Time to use it!
There are numerous ways and exercises to do with the sled, but for this article, we’re going to only focus on the lower body, specifically knee rehab.
Best Sled Exercise to Target VMO
The best exercise to target the VMO is with backward sled drags.
Grab the boat rope, squat down as low as possible without pain, and begin to walk backward with the sled to push your heels into the ground on each step. This is going to contract those VMOs nice and hard.
Another great exercise that you can perform is bear crawl drags. These will be awesome to target your glutes and VMO, which will help to stabilize your knee. For this exercise, you will need a harness.
Here is a video showing you everything.
So as you can see, there’s no need for your rehab to be dull. You can get an excellent workout, drop body fat, rehabilitate your knee, and build up the VMO just from sled dragging. I encourage you to try it out and let me know what you think.
About the Author:
As the world’s top muscle-building superhero, Trey “3” Armstrong helps guys transform from scrawny to superhero in 12 weeks with his trademarked 3-Step Muscle Building System. For his exact muscle-building blueprint that will help you build a bigger chest, massive arms, a broad back, and powerful legs visit www.3StepMuscleBuilding.com.