Wake 101
Home   Articles   Pics/Video   Gear   Wake 101   Events   Community   Forums   Classifieds   Contests   Shop   Search
WakeWorld Home
Email Password
Go Back   WakeWorld > >> Wakeboarding Discussion Archives > Archive through July 21, 2005

Thread Tools Display Modes
Old    stormrider            06-20-2005, 12:51 PM Reply   
Got my MRI results last week. Bottom line: after age 25 the intervertabral spinal discs get more fragile and are less and less able to handle a high impact sport like wakeboarding in much the same way very few people can withstand the high impact hits of the NFL after age 30.

Bad analogy: the disc in a young person is like fresh bread. In an older person it's like a cracker. If you're 44, consistent wakeboarding with the occasional hard "whiplash" fall can crush some crackers!

Suggestion: Clear with your doctor, but if you are over 30, at least get an X-Ray of your cervical spine and find out to what degree the discs have thinned. Then monitor from time to time with additional x-rays.
Old     (guido)      Join Date: Jul 2002       06-20-2005, 1:15 PM Reply   
dude, your killin' me.
Old     (malibuboarder75)      Join Date: Jan 2004       06-20-2005, 1:55 PM Reply   
I think we should all eat healthy, live happy, and wakeboard till we are 60. The more you worry then the worse the outcome will be. I know this is coming from a 17yr old.
Old     (whit)      Join Date: Feb 2001       06-20-2005, 2:10 PM Reply   
Another reason why going to the doctors is a bad idea...

Did you go to the doctors because you where feeling bad? Or are you a tad of a hypocondriac?

Any word on where sitting in front of the TV with a remote falls on the danger scale?
Old    waterdog2            06-20-2005, 2:10 PM Reply   
They just approved some fancy new disc inserts. I broke my back 15 years ago. if I would have took the doctors advice, I should have rolled over and died right then. The practice of medecine? They are still practiceing. They havent got it right yet!
Old    eastcoastjedi            06-20-2005, 2:11 PM Reply   
Got stacks of Xrays in my closet bro
Bottom Line: Things hurt more when you get older. I still do what puts a smile on my face despite the pain.
At 33 I am still progressing my bag o tricks on both a snowboard and a wakeboard.
I dont huck but follow logical progression using tools like tramps and water ramps to eliminate as much of the learning curve as possible.

There are plenty of high impact sports people play past 30, rugby for one.
Thanks for the warning but I am not going to "save" myself for later in life.
You could die tomorrow so ride for today.
Old     (wakeme884)      Join Date: Jul 2004       06-20-2005, 2:27 PM Reply   
Might as well play while you can because when youre old you are just going to sit around and drool anyway. Im already old, but Im still going at it(havent started drooling yet).
Old     (jklein)      Join Date: May 2001       06-20-2005, 2:32 PM Reply   
jeff 2: I'm with ya. I had a lamonectomy 15 years ago, I'm 42 and still going strong.

Just make sure you exercise to strengthen your back and keep all the muscles around your spine strong. Stretch good before entering the water.

Never give up.
Old    stormrider            06-20-2005, 2:32 PM Reply   
Whit, if you were close I'd slap you upside the head!

Went to the doctor because of intense pain in my left shoulder and arm. MRI showed that the disc at c6-c7 was protruding (probably herniated) into the foraminal canal pinning the nerve root against the vertebrae. c5-c6 is almost the same. Discs are actually protruding out the back and mildly compressing my spinal cord! Only symptomatic problem is the c6/c7.

Wierd thing is the fall that started it all was nothing. Just the last straw in a very active life.

Guess I should clarify: I'm not saying stop. I'm saying get data so you can monitor your condition and not push yourself too far. Sorta like a boxer with concussions. You count and monitor them then you get out of the ring when the scans and concussion count tell you one more and you might whatever.
Old     (kybool)      Join Date: Aug 2004       06-20-2005, 2:45 PM Reply   
"You could die tomorrow so ride for today."

I like that
Old    leggester            06-20-2005, 2:55 PM Reply   
No shi-ite...

Who woulda thunk
Old    gunny_baker            06-20-2005, 3:02 PM Reply   
Steve, sorry to hear about that. Jim told me the other day about your back. Sucks! You WILL get better and you WILL ride again, you love it too much! I tried to e-mail you but it got returned... Thanks for the invite last weekend, I had to work all weekend. Hope you had a good time before the fall at least. Tell Christian I said Hi!

Old     (jarrod)      Join Date: May 2003       06-20-2005, 3:14 PM Reply   
I suddenly feel old.

Oh well. Every year I go bigger and learn tricks faster. I'll try to forget about this thread. I'm more concerned about my increased blood alcohol level than I am age.

Old     (jimmysq)      Join Date: Mar 2005       06-20-2005, 5:27 PM Reply   
It is in how you take care of yourself I have been working out my since i was 16 I am now 42 still ride and throw a good session I went to the doctor the other day cause my shoulder was hurting from playing football at the sandbar in havasu ( took a hard hit) just want to check it out, the doctor said I have the bones of a 20 yr old, so it just goes to show push your body it will respond to the stress by making it stronger

Old    jibber13            06-20-2005, 5:44 PM Reply   
your only as old as the one that your feeling!
Old     (dococ)      Join Date: Mar 2002       06-20-2005, 6:03 PM Reply   
I wanna be the "Banana George Blair" of wakeboarding.

And will somebody please pass some cheese whiz to go with my crackers?
Old    walt            06-20-2005, 6:25 PM Reply   
Granted I'm not going anywhere near as big as a lot of you but boarding really seems to make me feel better with the exception of my knees.

If I miss a week or two I can really feel my back start to stiffen up.

And then there is the whole mental health aspect of the sport that is priceless

Here's a few pics of a guy that I've boarded with a few times in the winter.
I think he's around 64 now and still going strong.


Old     (solo)      Join Date: Oct 2001       06-20-2005, 6:29 PM Reply   
Yeah, I wanna be that guy, only with a grab!
Old     (wake_eater)      Join Date: May 2003       06-20-2005, 8:37 PM Reply   
that dude is a badass!! he's my role model.
Old    waterdog2            06-20-2005, 8:58 PM Reply   
J rod, Dont worry, You know when your old when you have to quit drinking because it interfears with all the meds from your doctors.
Old    mirra            06-20-2005, 9:27 PM Reply   
Thanks for the advise...I picked up this sport about 3 weeks ago. I needed a new sport being that I just turned 31. Last week I learn heelside wake to wake 180's with a slob grab and today I think I blew my left knee out... Will know more tomorrow once I get an MRI. Since my knee is popping in and out of joint I assume this can't be good...
Old     (dudeman)      Join Date: Mar 2005       06-21-2005, 3:18 AM Reply   
Dude, I'm 45 and personally believe if you stop playing, you start dying. I also won't take any meds from the docs UNLESS it has the warning that says "Alcohol may intensify the effect". Yeah baby! Saw this quote in someones profile. "We don't stop playing because we grow old, we grow old because we stop playing". So true.
Old     (seattle)      Join Date: Mar 2002       06-21-2005, 6:40 AM Reply   
I'm forty and ride a couple times a week year round. If you "OLD GUYS" don't want to ride it just means more butter for me.


You want to be you with a grab
Old     (wakescene)      Join Date: Feb 2001       06-21-2005, 7:17 AM Reply   
Can someone please explain to my dad that at 71 years of age his crackers are about to crumble! We got him out behind the boat last summer, and he is itching to go again this summer!!!

Go Dad!
Old     (socalwakepunk)      Join Date: Dec 2002       06-21-2005, 7:25 AM Reply   
"My dad's got the ultimate set of tools, I can fix it!"

Got milk?
Old     (tyler_o)      Join Date: Nov 2004       06-21-2005, 8:16 AM Reply   
Steve- Sorry to hear about your back. Suggestion: Get one of those inflatable exercise balls for stretching and low impact situps/reverse situps. I've really strengthened my back using the ball and no more back pain.

Walt- Your pics are inspirational. I'm almost 35...he's 64... that means I should be riding for at least another 29 years!

Randy- I too really like this quote:

"We don't stop playing because we grow old, we grow old because we stop playing".

I also get inspiration from riding with guys who are younger, better and not afraid to call me out if I'm not charging it.
Old     (boarditup)      Join Date: Jan 2004       06-21-2005, 9:15 AM Reply   
Hmmm - I am 41, wakeboarding since 1983, and never been injured. I don't take it easy, but am careful not to try something too far from my ability level.
Old     (vincent_04_team)      Join Date: May 2005       06-21-2005, 9:15 AM Reply   
Me and my father ride on LF boards and will die with our LF boards. "ride hard fall hard" who care about backs and knees you only live once. beside these days anythhing can be rebuilt. hello technology is make use of it.
Old     (dococ)      Join Date: Mar 2002       06-21-2005, 9:24 AM Reply   
"these days anythhing can be rebuilt"

Actually, your back still cannot, at least not very well. But don't stop charging if that's what makes you happy.

And you better hope LF stays in business for a while!
Old     (dudeman)      Join Date: Mar 2005       06-21-2005, 9:24 AM Reply   
I've had both shoulders reconstructed from skydiving injuries, parachute collapsed at 30' and landed on my head (can't understand how that didn't kill me), crashed endless times roadracing motorcylces in England, got hit head on by a drunk driver headed to the track and got launched thru the windshield at 110 mph into the car that hit us and thrown back into our car as it was being ripped in half. I know when your back is out, you have nothing but there ain't no crackers, just hardened, deformed cartiledge. Anyway a pretty face and perfect body will only get you into trouble with the ladies and your wife. The most extreme pain I experience is my wife in the boat. Good luck, heal up and get back at it.
Old     (fly135)      Join Date: Jun 2004       06-21-2005, 9:25 AM Reply   
I'll be 50 later this year, but I'm still working on new stuff. Destroyed my Motive trying a mobe in a cable tournament last weekend. I just learned a 270 spin off the curved fun box at OWC last week, and I picked up the front flip on the ramp about two months ago.
I definitely don't have the nerve that the younger guys have, and that's probably saving me from getting hurt too bad. The key for me is to just work on something new when you feel motivated and confident and not push it.
Every now and then I crunch my back on a flat landing off a ramp, and I find that stretching is like a miracle cure for fixing it up. The weird thing is that beating my body up a bit without getting "too hurt" seems to make me tougher.
Old     (slipknot)      Join Date: Aug 2001       06-21-2005, 9:36 AM Reply   
cowen, dude you just bought a super and now you are retiring? Your kids are lovin it, more riding time for them, or are you selling the boat?

And shouldn't the title of the thread be riders over 45?

Sorry to hear about the back.

As for the pics, hopefully that will be me at 64, that is the true "Gramps"

(Message edited by slipknot on June 21, 2005)
Old     (damienk)      Join Date: May 2002       06-21-2005, 10:49 AM Reply   
I'm a dead man!!!
Old     (nautyboy)      Join Date: Apr 2005       06-21-2005, 11:20 AM Reply   
I know guys that are 25 years young and are as fragile as an egg shell. They are always getting hurt, they are always crying about something, and they are not living what I would consider a lifestyle that matches their age group.

On the other hand, there's my dad. He was age 62 when he bench-pressed his all time high - 350 lbs! He is an animal, he works out 3 times a week, plays racquet ball 2 times a week, and spends the entire weekend doing chores like digging ponds and building waterfalls. I tell you what, I'm 30 years old and I CAN NOT hang with him when it comes to strength, endurance, and pain tolerance.

I think that 90% of staying "young", if you want to call it that, is mental. I for one need to get my ass off of this computer and go stretch and workout! I probably will go to starbucks, procrastinate woking out, skip straight to a set behind the boat, and hurt myself. The real question is --- will I get hurt because of my age, or because of my lack of conditioning?

You are what you make yourself. You can be like George Forman or you can be like some washed-up druggy twenty-something loser, or you can fall somewhere in between. IT IS ALL UP TO THE INDIVIDUAL!
Old     (buzz_grande)      Join Date: Mar 2004       06-21-2005, 11:20 AM Reply   
In dog years, I'm dead!!

Still boardin' though!
Old     (tyler_o)      Join Date: Nov 2004       06-21-2005, 11:30 AM Reply   

I believe the answer to your question is lack of conditioning, no doubt!
Old     (schmo)      Join Date: Oct 2003       06-21-2005, 11:36 AM Reply   
That was probably intended as a rhetorical question. ;)
Old     (flux)      Join Date: Jun 2003       06-21-2005, 12:07 PM Reply   
Aside from age being a mental condition, the body definately ages differently for different folks. Conditioning is starting to play a big factor in my wakeboarding, I work out alot and do it to prevent injury and prolong my sets. While I don't blast with my younger cohorts, I do the same amount of sets over a weekend as they do, as much as I can handle before getting tired and getting off the rope to prevent injury. My technique is getting better, so I try more things at a gradual pace. I may never go inverted, but I will learn switch toeside W2W.

I learned a long time ago that progression plays a big key in not getting jacked up. I have only been boarding for a few years, and am progressing somewhat slow, but I have only been injured once, pulled my stomach muscles because I WAS OUT OF SHAPE.

Many medical conditions are hereditary/genetic. Alot of folks just have the disposition to get jacked up, but being in good physical shape is key. I wanna be like the guy in Walt's post, rockin the glass at 60 and beyond.

(Message edited by flux on June 21, 2005)
Old    stormrider            06-21-2005, 1:04 PM Reply   
Glen: Keeping the boat. Keeps me in my teenager's world.

All bravado aside, I was very surprised when I found out how badly off my c5/6 and c6/7 discs were. THERE WERE LITTLE OR NO ADVANCED SYMPTOMS. Looking back, the only "warning" was, I believe, pain between my left shoulder blade and spine that I wrote off as a muscle pull and a while back "burning" or "itching" on the outside of my left forearm that I thought was allergies.

The words "advanced" "severe" and "moderate" are used quite a bit in the MRI report. In laymans terms, the discs above and below the two problem ones look like scallops; the problem ones look like communion wafers. Squished out, the extra mass expanded back into the spine and left against the nerve roots.

Again, I was really surprised by how trashed these discs are. I was riding with my son and Bret Baker when the c6/c7 disc finally blew up. If you asked Bret, he'd probably agree that I didn't take any hard falls that day.

Had I known 2 months ago what I know now, I would have gone to my chiropractor, gotten the x-rays and known then and there that there was significant thinning and could have "pulled up" before, figuratively speaking, nosediving my spine into its current state.

Ideally, I would have taken x-rays when I started wakeboarding then periodically thereafter to monitor things.

But I am still totally into the family version of the wakeboarding lifestyle; now, however, it looks like I'm gonna be the dad who once "played" who now enjoys watching his sons. That's fine with me. Heck, it was the main reason I got into this anyway.

Bret, you up for riding Saturday morning?
Old     (nautyboy)      Join Date: Apr 2005       06-21-2005, 3:04 PM Reply   

Dude, I'm getting depressed. Don't give into the temptation to believe your doctors 100% I can tell you with great confidence that the majority of doctors don't know jack $#!t about recovery! I know at least a half dozen people who have proved their doctors wrong concerning recovery and future abilities. You also have to remember that the U.S. Medical system is not designed to fix or heal, it is only intended to treat (this is why there is so much money in the medical profession, they have lots of repeat customers!). Look into other methods of healing, like yoga, meditation, diet, etc. You will be suprised what you body is capable of! Also, find a doctor who is known for working with atheletes, he/she will be able to speak your language, unlike the typical general practicioner.

Don't Give Up!
Old     (tonis)      Join Date: Mar 2005       06-21-2005, 3:40 PM Reply   
Steve sorry about the back. Cervical part of the spine is a sensitive area, take it easy untill you feel 100%. Definetly listen to your doctor, but if you don't like what he has to say you can always get a second opinion. As far as getting xrays before you ride I think thats a little extreme. I would advise cardio, stretching and mixing in some salads.
Old     (sam8)      Join Date: Dec 2004       06-21-2005, 6:15 PM Reply   
I'm 46, and things are changing...
I've worn a gunbelt (23lbs) for 25 years, and fell when I was 26, causing multiple fractures of my tailbone. The docs then cleared me for work, but told me, "This might come back and give you some problems when you are older" There was no such thing as an MRI in those days.
No kidding it came back.
I had on and off again major back pain since about 1990, but I toughed it out and ignored it, riding MX, driving Off-road rigs and enjoyed watersports and an otherwise active life up until March of '03.
That day I found to my surprise that I had no feeling in my left leg down to my knee. Figured maybe it ws time to go see the doc.
Fast-forward 16 months, still have not been cleared to return to work, I have advanced degenerative disc disease at the lowest three levels of my lumbar spine, not coincidentally right next to the damaged tailbone. There are indications that this process will continue to travel up my spine as I age.
One of the best surgeons in Sacto won't touch me. He says if I was 65 he would suggest a 3 level fusion, but would call that as a last resort, since I would simply lose the abilty to bend over and tie my own shoes.
He wants me to see the best of the best, down in S.F. and consider a multi-level artifical disc procedure.
There have been exactly zero days in the past 16 months that I have not felt pain at least at 7 on the 1-10 scale, and I am willing to look at the disc replacement.
But it is not a panacea, guys, they don't have this down pat and it ain't no simple case of out with the bad in with the good. The margin for error in the installation of the artifical disc is less than 2mm, and there is no going in and adjusting it if it isn't right, due to the installation process. Taking them out is described as "high risk invasive surgery"
If the install is off by 1-2mm, or a 1-2mm slip at a later date can cause paralysis, nerve damage, etc. The FDA has only approved it for single level replacement, and I need three, now. There are such things as a FDA compassionate waiver, but they are not easy to get. I am told I would get one on the first try, but that remains to be seen.
Because of my work, I've stayed in better than average shape all my life, and never saw this coming.
The moral of the story is enjoy each and every day you have your health. Do what you can to keep it, but recognize that luck and genetics play a role in your life that you cannot control, only mitigate. Enjoy, appreciate, and be thankful for the things you can do, never take it for granted.
I've had to give up my sandrail, and any dreams of building more of them. I've sold it, my quad, and am really rearranging my life. I drive the boat a little, sit in camp in the dunes, and am going to work on a new street rod project if things work out.
While alot of you are young enough that medicine will really improve with new technology, don't assume that they can fix everything, because they cannot, every "fix" has trade-offs, and you really need to evalute them before jumping in with both feet and/or depending on them to fix things you break...I have done the Yoga, the accupunture/accupressure, massage, etc, and the bottom line is that disc that degenerate do not heal or repair themselves. All you can do is avoid activity that creates pain.
I still don't know which path I will choose, but my life is forever changed.

(Message edited by sam8 on June 21, 2005)
Old     (slipknot)      Join Date: Aug 2001       06-21-2005, 6:26 PM Reply   
The guy I bought my boat from had the same thing. Doc said no more. That was it. Can you wear a brace or something?
Old     (wake_upppp)      Join Date: Nov 2003       06-21-2005, 6:38 PM Reply   
Scary story Army Dad. Best of luck to you.
Old    rickyrick            06-21-2005, 6:56 PM Reply   
At 51 its to late to stop now!
Old    obsurfer            06-21-2005, 9:35 PM Reply   
I'm waiting for all the injuries from dirtbikes to slow me down. This is why I changed to water sports. One summer sitting on the beach with a cast cured me. Like Buzz I have a good time but really don't over push myself. Hope you recover and get back on the water Steve. Steve
Old     (olddude)      Join Date: Oct 2003       06-22-2005, 4:35 AM Reply   
I'm 45 and still enjoying riding with my son who kills it!! This photo was taken at the performance tournament last year, I'm building a house right now, otherwise, I'd be riding the gravel tour again this year.
Old     (fly135)      Join Date: Jun 2004       06-22-2005, 7:14 AM Reply   
Craig, It sounds like you are in the Orlando area if you frequent the Gravel Tour. Have you ever been out to OWC?

Army Dad, when I hear a story like yours it reminds me to knock on wood. I sincerely hope things get better for you.
Old     (olddude)      Join Date: Oct 2003       06-22-2005, 7:20 AM Reply   
I live 1 hour from OWC, been there several times, try not to hurt myself on the sliders. I like the kickers and fun box John. I see that OWC is your home lake from your profile.
Old     (fly135)      Join Date: Jun 2004       06-22-2005, 7:42 AM Reply   
Technically speaking this is my home lake (my back yard)....

But I haven't been behind my boat since Nov of last year. It's much easier for me to go and play on the toys at Odub. Send me a message the next time you go out to OWC and we can meet.
Old    gunny_baker            06-22-2005, 8:01 AM Reply   
Steve, You're right. I never saw you take any falls that day that should have done ANY damage. I know how those back injuries are too, just threw mine out this weekend PICKING UP MY SON! What the...?! It seems I can beat myself to death and be fine but then the weirdest little movement and WHAM! I think the key to avoiding and then recovering from, when it does happen, is LOTS of stretching. I'm almost 100% since this weekend.

To answer your question about riding on Saturday AM... I'd LOVE to Steve, thanks. Same Bat time, same Bat channel?
Old    stormrider            06-22-2005, 10:09 AM Reply   
Brett: sounds good. 6:30 a.m., same launch ramp. If your wife wants to ride, she's certainly welcome. The bay was butter and it was sunny today so hopefully that will hold.

Army Dad: my prayer is that God will reveal his goodness to those around you by either miraculously, or through doctors, healing your back.
Old    clubjoeskier            06-22-2005, 2:23 PM Reply   
Great!! Just turned 44, and -now- I'm reading this thread.....Well, DAMN the crackers, full speed ahead!!! (where's my advil?)

I second dudeman--We don't stop playing cuz we grow old. We grow old cuz we stop playing...

I'll be riding my quad at Pismo this weekend though, so I'll consider it my break from all those hard falls on the water
Old     (damienk)      Join Date: May 2002       06-22-2005, 2:37 PM Reply   
A man is not old until regrets take the place of dreams.
Old    simba            06-22-2005, 4:07 PM Reply   
I have 3 degenerated disks in my lower back and one herninated in the L4-L5 area.

I still wakeboard but I mostly sky ski because its a lot easier on the lower back then wakeboarding. For all you older guys with bad backs, give it a shot, it will keep you on the water.

The landings are very soft with the shock towers and a lot less surface area hitting the water.

It might not be wakeboarding, but its fun and keeps me on the water with out much back pain and im still able to go big and do inverts.

Old     (sam8)      Join Date: Dec 2004       06-22-2005, 4:17 PM Reply   
thanks for the kind words, guys...
Damien, you are right, and I have not stopped dreaming, just changed the dreams...
My situation is such that riding in a car more than 45 min or so reqires a stop to walk around. I walk 1.5 miles 3 times a week in 4 ft. of water, and am trying to stay in shape.

Ron I'm glad you can still make it happen. It sounds like you are where I was a couple of years ago, and I hope you don't follow me down the path this far.
Old     (three6ty)      Join Date: Feb 2004       06-22-2005, 4:19 PM Reply   
Steven, two words( or maybe one depending how you write it) Wake Surfing!!!!! (wakesurfing)

Depending on how many times you crashed your motorcycle you should have about 3-5 lives left.

Ever see the Movie UNBREAKABLE???????
Your Bruce Wills and Steven is Samuel Jackson!!!!
Old     (dudeman)      Join Date: Mar 2005       06-22-2005, 6:25 PM Reply   
three6ty. The motorcylce crashes didn't hurt nearly as much as the skydiving accidents. Car wreck happened so fast, I didn't feel a thing although my face looked like ground round. I did eventually suffer the bad back with degenerative disk disease. That is a cause of the lack of nutrients to the disk. With proper alignment, they regenerate. It's not how you die, but how you live. If you go thru live afraid and apprehensive, your life will always be full of regrets. For all those that have posted with chronic pain, I've been there and with luck, I am fairly healthy. The reconstructed left shoulder hurts like hell, but they I never listen to the doc and recover before going full steam again. I wish all of those with pain the best of luck and hopefully a full recovery.
Old     (doug_rose)      Join Date: Jun 2003       06-22-2005, 8:48 PM Reply   
Yesterday's San Diego Union Tribune

Baby boomers face a fitness challenge: their aging bodies
By Mark Sauer
June 21, 2005

Baby boomers, like Ron Zamarin, cling fiercely to the games of their youth, despite aches, pains and strains of middle age.
After shoulder surgery (skiing collision), hernia surgery (volleyball mishap) and therapy for a pulled groin all in the past year, a bloody lip wasn't about to keep the 54-year-old from another of his athletic passions ice hockey.

The day is coming, of course, when he will no longer be able to play. But Geisberg prefers not to think about it.

"As long as I am having fun and can compete at a satisfying level, why would I give it up?" said Geisberg, who in 1985 immigrated to the U.S. from Slovakia, where he grew up skiing and playing hockey.

"The sports, they are keeping me young."

Geisberg is hardly unique among millions of middle-aged jocks who remain game of mind, spirit and body, making the baby boom generation the most active, age-resistant generation in history.

Besides treatment for injuries and rehabilitation, a lot of the relatively new field of sports-medicine concentrates on injury prevention and basic fitness.

Here are some recommendations for aging athletes from the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons:

ALWAYS TAKE TIME TO WARM UP AND STRETCH. Warm up with jumping jacks, jogging or walking in place for three to five minutes, then slowly and gently stretch, holding each stretch for 30 seconds.

AVOID THE "WEEKEND WARRIOR SYNDROME." Jamming physical activity into two days invites injury and does not increase your fitness level. Thirty minutes of moderate physical activity daily, activity that might include walking the dog, working in the garden and taking stairs instead of an elevator as well as working out, is ideal.

INVEST IN LESSONS AND PROPER EQUIPMENT. Proper form and instruction help reduce overuse injuries, such as tendinitis and stress fractures.

KNOW YOUR BODY AND LISTEN TO IT. Understand the difference between routine soreness associated with exercise and sharp pains, or pain in joints, which may signal injury.

DEVELOP A BALANCED FITNESS PROGRAM incorporating cardiovascular exercise, strength training and flexibility. Cross-training not only spares strained muscles and aching joints, it also relieves boredom.

IF YOU'VE BEEN SEDENTARY FOR A WHILE or are concerned about your health, consult your physician and consider having a professional trainer tailor an exercise program for you.

On tennis, volleyball and basketball courts, baseball and soccer fields, ice and roller rinks, biking and hiking trails, jogging paths, swimming pools and beaches, boomers cling ferociously to the games of their youth.

"There is absolutely no question baby boomers are radically different from their parents when it comes to continuing to play their sports and stay active," said Dr. Richard A. Parker. An osteopath, he is medical director of San Diego Sports Medicine and Family Health Center in the Alvarado Hospital complex near SDSU.

While the 77 million Americans born between 1946 and 1964 may be more active and expect to play and live longer than previous generations, that doesn't mean they are impervious to the realities of aging.

Parker said that while the mind may be willing, concessions to age must be made to avoid breakdowns of the flesh.

"As we reach middle-age, and I'm in that category myself, we must pay attention to what's happening with our bodies and what changes we have to make in order to keep doing what we love to do," he said.

"I see a lot of osteoarthritis on weight-bearing joints especially knees and in the back and neck. We also see a lot of degenerative disc disease in this age group.

As we age, bones and muscle lose strength and mass. Soft tissues, tendons, ligaments and muscles, become less elastic and more vulnerable to tearing.

Age also causes lung capacity to decline and a decrease in the amount of blood the heart can pump.

While these changes are inevitable, the rate of decline can be slowed which is vital if those in their 40s, 50s, 60s and beyond are to continue playing their games.

"The first thing to understand is that as you get older you can no longer play yourself into shape. You have to get in shape in order to play," said Parker. Exercise regimens are nearly as numerous and varied as diets. Parker stresses a simple one-two-three approach: Cardiovascular fitness; strength training; and a regular flexibility program.

"The idea is to create a musculoskeletal system that is strong enough to tolerate the wear and tear that occurs with athletic activity," he said.

Most physicians and physical trainers agree that 30 minutes of moderate to vigorous exercise at least three times a week is necessary for fitness.

Though weight machines are an efficient way to build and maintain strength, Parker said many trainers now emphasize working out the "core" the overlapping trunk muscles of the abdomen, lower back, buttocks, hips and pelvis.

Exercises that focus on isometrics and balance to improve strength including Pilates (exercises that focus on improving flexibility and strength for the overall body), workouts with a Swiss ball or with free weights are rapidly replacing bulk-up routines on machines.

"Our trainers in the rehab/exercise room are not asking for new machines," Parker said. "They want more open space."

Workin' my way back

When Gil Bergeron fell and broke his shoulder a few years ago while Roller Blading near his Escondido home, there was no question he was willing to endure surgery and the long, tedious rehab necessary to get back to playing ice hockey, even though he was 52.

"For me, it's a business," said Bergeron, a native of Montreal who, for a fee, organizes several senior-level, no-checking hockey games weekly at area ice rinks, including ones that Peter Geisberg plays in.

R.I.C.E. to the rescue
Active people at any age can suffer from aches, pains and minor strains when playing sports. Experts say one of the the best early treatments of a moderate sports injury is the R.I.C.E. formula:

R. (Rest) It's key at first to stop playing and rest. Later, keep weight off the injured joint.

I. (Ice) To ease swelling, apply ice for 10 to 20 minutes (no more, to avoid frostbite). Do this each hour.

C. (Compress) Limit swelling and keep the injured area still by wrapping it in bandages.

E. (Elevate) Reduce the amount of blood going to the injured area by raising, or elevating, it.

"I have to show by example," Bergeron said. "I must encourage people who get hurt to come back and play."

Sandy Bilodeau didn't need Bergeron's encouragement to go through the pain and sweat of rehab to get back on the ice. The 42-year-old wife and mother to four kids had been playing hockey for only a year when she broke several bones in her ankle during a midnight tournament game in Las Vegas.

She loves the sport and cannot wait to get back on the ice.

So three times a week, Bilodeau does stretching and balancing exercises and weight training as part of an intense rehabilitation program at Physical Rehabilitation Network in Encinitas.

"We start with a heat pack to get the muscles loosened, then we do some massage and stretching for joint mobilization," said physical therapist Jennifer Sobajian she kneeded Bilodeau's ankle. still swollen and stiff seven weeks after the injury.

Bilodeau had been playing hockey four times a week before her injury, often with her husband in Bergeron's groups.

"I've been active my whole life, but playing hockey is the best exercise, the greatest workout, I've ever had," she said, watching Sobajian manipulate her ankle.

Barring any setbacks, Bilodeau faced four to five months of physical therapy and a full six months of recovery time before she expected her doctor to clear her to resume playing hockey.

"It's driving me crazy," she said midway through her rehab ordeal. "But I'm being a nerd about doing everything they tell me I don't want any setbacks. And, to be realistic, I've got four kids to take care of besides playing hockey."

Having clients this motivated can be a double-edged sword, Sobajian said.

"We see people go through extraordinary rehab programs because they are so determined to get back out there. But many try to get back too soon and get hurt again," she said.

"In general, the older you are, the more you are prone to injury and the slower you are to recover."

Peter Geisberg said he has made two concessions to his hockey injuries: He now wears shoulder pads and has replaced his plastic visor with a full face cage.

When his days of playing hockey are over, Geisberg said, he plans to take up scuba diving. But that's still a long way off. After all, there are guys in their 60s and 70s playing in Bergeron's pickup games, as well as one who's 82.

So when is it time to finally give it all up?

"Never," Dr. Parker said.

"You need to stay engaged for a lifetime in fitness and sports. The health benefits of staying active are phenomenal."

Old     (balti)      Join Date: Feb 2005       06-25-2005, 2:34 AM Reply   
I have just turned 30.Been for MRI and YIP 5 discs are degenerating. Its the price humans pay for walking upright(erect).
Doc said only thing that'll help is to
STRETCH:every second day, hamstrings, glutes , lowerback and abs and before and after riding.
GYM: Build your back muscles, abs, chest and very NB core muscle groups(do pilates or pliometrics as a conditioning exercise)
IF muscles go into spasm use mild anti-inflammatories with some physio.

Old    big_rob            06-28-2005, 2:52 PM Reply   
Monday through Thursday mornings - Exercise at YMCA
Monday Nights - Volleyball
Friday - Wakeboard
Be smart, live healthy, laugh well, enjoy life.
I'm 46

Old     (fly135)      Join Date: Jun 2004       06-29-2005, 7:54 AM Reply   
Here's video of me readjusting my crackers at the cable park. I just learned to spin off the curved fun box so there are more shots of that than other stuff....
Old     (nautyboy)      Join Date: Apr 2005       06-29-2005, 11:58 AM Reply   
John, you da man! Nice video bro. Guys like you keep me stoked and motivated, thanks for doing what you do!
Old     (fly135)      Join Date: Jun 2004       06-30-2005, 7:21 AM Reply   
Thanks Ed, I appreciate that. I used to ride behind the boat every day, but when you get to be my age it's hard to find a reliable wakeboard partner. After I started going to the cable park I got hooked. Lots of friendly people, all the riding you can stand, and a bunch of toys to slide on.
Old    wakekat            06-30-2005, 12:25 PM Reply   
Glad to see there are other old folks out there new to the sport! I'm 43. I started skiing when I was 8, did the normal thing of 2 skis, then slalom, then when I got into my 20's I went to trick skiing. Started wakeboarding a couple of years ago, and last year started a new sport of cycling because I found out I had a lower disk problem that running was aggravating - causing sciatic pain and numbing of my lower legs/feet. But I'm still going and sitting at work daydreaming about the wakeboarding and cycling I'm going to do over the long july 4th weekend! Staying active is what KEEPS US YOUNG!!!

Old    joestewart            06-30-2005, 1:12 PM Reply   
Yeah, It sucks getting old!
Old    joestewart            06-30-2005, 1:12 PM Reply   
Yeah, It sucks getting old!
Old    stormrider            07-08-2005, 10:50 AM Reply   
Army Dad: found something that might be of interest to you. Apparently they have been doing multi-level artificial disc replacements in Europe for years. In the U.S. single level replacements are still only part of clinical trials. Here's the website for a hospital in Germany that is apparently focusing on this stuff:

I've been thinking and praying for you. Obviously, I'm not a doctor and have no idea if the German outfit is legit, but thought you might find the information useful.

God bless.
Old     (batman)      Join Date: Nov 2001       07-10-2005, 8:03 PM Reply   
I will be the big FIVE O (50) in October and love every minute of it even the next day when I have to slide sideways out of bed!!!
Old    newtique            07-11-2005, 7:36 AM Reply   
OH NO! I wish I had read this thread before I took my first ride last week! Now I'm hooked on collision course with a wheelchair!
I'll be 59 in a couple of weeks, and I just took a lesson on a wakeboard. Can switch pretty well and trying like heck to get some air. After reading this..... I dunno! Should I stop while I'm ahead


Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 11:07 PM.

Home   Articles   Pics/Video   Gear   Wake 101   Events   Community   Forums   Classifieds   Contests   Shop   Search
Wake World Home


© 2016 eWake, Inc.    
Advertise    |    Contact    |    Terms of Use    |    Privacy Policy    |    Report Abuse    |    Conduct    |    About Us