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Author Topic: when can I go skiing  (Read 922 times)

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Offline ROLLO

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when can I go skiing
« on: June 21, 2010, 09:08:13 AM »
Hello all - been reading all the info on this site since December when I ruptured my ACL at an artificial ski slope in Manchester (UK and the advice has been invaluable).  Finally got my backside into gear and signed up !  I had my ACL reconstruction using hamstring graft 6 wks ago.  Everything going ok,  pretty much the same as most people good days and bad. Anyway my question is hoping to go skiing on 10th Feb which will be 9 months after op.  Have a brace and will be sticking to pottering about on the nursery slopes and maybe the odd not to challenging red run. Surgeon said no skiing for 18 months but the physio suggested he is being over cautious. Op went well - had my cartlidge tidied up at the same time. Any advice most welcome - thanks

Offline jg5118

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Re: when can I go skiing
« Reply #1 on: June 21, 2010, 03:00:14 PM »
Remember that the surgeon has seen the inside of your knee - the physio hasn't.  Isn't it better to be cautious than to screw it all up again...

I'd leave it a season and then take a drive to a wet ski slope, not dry - so many injuries happen on dry slopes it's really not worth the risk

Offline Kaputt_Knee

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Re: when can I go skiing
« Reply #2 on: June 21, 2010, 04:30:23 PM »
I've been told this in the UK as well, also been told I'll never participate in sport again, have to walk with a stick blah blah blah!

Get to a surgeon or sports physician who has a more modern and open mind to returning to sports. Even if you have to go private it will be worth it if you are serious about returning to sports.

I underwent a 6 hour plus ACL revision in August 2008. It also included reconstructing my LCL, trimming a couple of meniscus tears and realigning the head of my fibula which had healed incorrectly after the fracture was missed by my original surgeon. I was cleared for skiing with a brace by my surgeon at 5.5 months, although I did not actually get back on skis until about 6 months as I waited for my brace to be fitted correctly first.

I've returned to skiing within a year of each of my ACL recons except for the incorrectly aligned one. That was so far out of position I could not straighten my leg, so was unable to return to sports until it was corrected.

A great deal of the attitude to sport injuries depends on whether your doctor sees these as "self-inflicted" and therefore a burden on an over-taxed system, or as part and parcel of the risk involved in participating in sport to remain healthy. The former is indicative of a health system that is reactive (such as in the UK) and the latter a preventative one where the patients are rewarded for taking part in health programmes to prevent health problems, but do run the risk of injury (such as I have found in Germany/Austria).

As for the incidence of injuries on dry vs. artificial snow slopes, just different types of injury on the whole. Dry slopes tend to be carpet-type burns and hand/arm/shoulder injuries due to the matting and artificial snow slopes tend to have the same type of injuries you get on real ski slopes. The main problem is of not having the right tools for the job which includes your ability level.

You certainly have plenty of time to regain your physical fitness - many skiing injuries are more a result of NOT being fit enough for the level of activity you are taking part in. Remember skiing for 5 to 7 hours a day in a cold environment at altitude does tax your system far more than skiing every weekend in a fridge just down the motorway!  ;D

Sue  ;)
1989 big trauma R. knee - sorted
1990-2004 3ACL recons and 20+ arthroscopies -RK
3/06 LK ACL torn!
4/06 ACL recon, kneecap broken
09 &10/06- 2x meniscus trims
3/07 - Notch Plastic & Lateral Release
14/8/08 complete revision ACL plus LCL/PLC recon
6/2/09 returned to skiing! Whoopee

Offline Snowy

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Re: when can I go skiing
« Reply #3 on: June 21, 2010, 05:31:17 PM »
Hey Rollo,

I'm like you - an avid skier with a busted ACL. I'm having my reconstruction (hamstring) in two and a half weeks.

First, the caveat that every injury is different, and of course a lot depends on your rehab going smoothly and as expected. However, 18 months sounds very conservative based on everything I've heard since my injury. My OS says that if all goes well his normal release back to full sports is 8 months; my PT says his standard rehab protocol is 6 months. I have many buddies over on the EpicSki forums (another great place for skiing-specific ACL stories) who have been through this injury, and for a straight ACL rupture and straightforward recovery it seems that anywhere from 6-12 months is considered normal, depending on how the individual's rehab goes. Both my PT and OS have advised that I should wear a functional brace for the first season back on snow.

Kaputt_knee offers great advice on how to move forward. I'd just echo her point about working really hard on your general fitness before you go start skiing again. Having good strong leg muscles is so important to help prevent future injuries.

As long as your PT is aware of your goals and is happy to help you achieve them, the best thing you can possibly do is listen to and follow his or her advice. :) Good luck with your rehab, and let's hope we're both back on the slopes one day in the not-too-distant future.
Mar 11: R Biceps femoris tear (skiing)
Jul 10: ACLr (hamstring autograft)
Mar 10: L ACL rupture (skiing)
Feb 06: L partial ACL tear (kickboxing)
Dec 03: R bone edema (motorbike)
Jan 01: R patellar chip (motorbike)
May 93: R ACL sprain (hockey)
Ongoing: bilateral PFS and OA

Offline ROLLO

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Re: when can I go skiing
« Reply #4 on: June 21, 2010, 06:59:40 PM »
Thanks for all your replies. Was gonna go to Austria to the same resort as we usually go. Went there in Feb this yr whilst waiting for my op but only skied on the gentle slopes with a brace on. Decided to take all your advice into account and wait untill 2012 - it's not worth the risk considering all the pain and hard work I will have gone through. Thanks for helping me decide the answer for a question I probably already knew the answer to. I think I was just trying to please the kids and husband.

Offline Kaputt_Knee

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Re: when can I go skiing
« Reply #5 on: June 21, 2010, 08:09:56 PM »
The sooner you get back in action on the slopes the sooner your fear of hurting yourself again will fade into a distant BAD memory.

Apart from one person we were saying do it under the guidance of your PT - so why have you decided to miss a season? Do you only ski because the rest of the family do?

BTW which resort are you/they going to? I live on the Austrian/German border and ski most of the time in Austria (Tirol and Salzburgerland)

Sue
1989 big trauma R. knee - sorted
1990-2004 3ACL recons and 20+ arthroscopies -RK
3/06 LK ACL torn!
4/06 ACL recon, kneecap broken
09 &10/06- 2x meniscus trims
3/07 - Notch Plastic & Lateral Release
14/8/08 complete revision ACL plus LCL/PLC recon
6/2/09 returned to skiing! Whoopee















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