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Old    np3 (ponder86)      Join Date: Mar 2008       03-07-2009, 12:20 PM Reply   
I don't know if this has been discussed before or not, but I am about to start riding again after having my ACL repaired over the summer and I was just wondering how long it took some of you guys to get back to your riding level before you tore your ACL?
Old    M-Dizzle (liquidmx)      Join Date: Jun 2005       03-07-2009, 12:29 PM Reply   
Depending on your surgery style full recovery has a different window. Some of the most common things I was told and noticed was that the 6-9 month window was dangerous. The knee feels 100% but is still healing. I had an allograph and was told that full grafting took upwards of 2 years.

I was back to my same old self prop ab 1 yr out or so. But I had no real desire to get back there quickly. I worked on a lot of holes in my riding during my rehab period.
Old    np3 (ponder86)      Join Date: Mar 2008       03-07-2009, 12:33 PM Reply   
Thanks man.

At the end of this month, which is when I'll start riding again, I will be 9 mths out of surgery. I had a cadaver ligament replace my ACL. I think that's an allograph, not sure though. Just wanting to ride really bad and not injur it again.
Old    Austin Roeder (aroed)      Join Date: Jan 2009       03-07-2009, 12:38 PM Reply   
yeah im hoping to start riding 6 months out which will be the very end of july and i was kind of hoping to go to a tournament 7 months out but i dont know how smart that would be im sure ill just feel it out once i get back to riding.
Old    Jeffrey Blanchard (eternalshadow)      Join Date: Nov 2001       03-07-2009, 12:46 PM Reply   
I started standing up behind the boat about 5-6 months post surgery, I started trying to ride about 7-8 months, and then it was the offseason. I rehabbed more over the winter and hit it like normal at about 13 months, it would have been sooner but like i say, offseason/winter got me.
Old    M-Dizzle (liquidmx)      Join Date: Jun 2005       03-07-2009, 3:06 PM Reply   
BTW... A LOT of sports ortho surgeons try to convince their patients to not get a knee brace. I think its an ego thing of theirs...or a lack of understanding of the sport. I would DEFINITELY get a brace without question or hesitation.
Old    np3 (ponder86)      Join Date: Mar 2008       03-07-2009, 3:54 PM Reply   
Yeah there's no way I'm riding without a brace, I have CTi's for both knee's. I tore my PCL in my other knee a few years ago and they went in and cleaned it up on the same day they did the ACL reconstruction on my other knee.
Old    Taylor H (maliburider456)      Join Date: Nov 2006       03-07-2009, 6:47 PM Reply   
i had a hamstring graft. i have landed all of my tricks within the first 2 weeks of riding again and most of them 1st try. it surprised me. i still havent landed my moby dick after acl surgery though.
Old    Austin Roeder (aroed)      Join Date: Jan 2009       03-07-2009, 8:34 PM Reply   
taylor how far out from surgery are you and when did start riding again im hoping to start at 6 months.
Old    Taylor H (maliburider456)      Join Date: Nov 2006       03-07-2009, 8:58 PM Reply   
i started riding again at 6 months. i have been riding for a month now. the first few times it felt really weird and kind of weak but after that it is good. it feels as strong as it can be now
Old    danny (hyperlite1342003)      Join Date: Mar 2007       03-08-2009, 1:14 AM Reply   
Hey guys I tore my acl feb 08 on my dirt bike and just got it checked out, last summer tried wake boarding last year and it just collapsed on me every jump , probably reinjured it 5 times in the last year , going to have surgery this coming nov, I broke the patella twice in 95 started boarding in 99 little scared of having surgery 3 times on the same knee, Trying to get it ready for 2010 summer, I'm really bummed about not boarding for 1year plus......
Old    Steve McKim (mbsteez)      Join Date: May 2005       03-08-2009, 11:23 AM Reply   
I believe the reason lots of surgeons say not to use a brace is that once the repair is fully healed, the brace will actually act as a crutch. Your body won't relearn to protect itself like it did before the injury. I know my surgeon told me not to use mine after a certain time period and I've never had any problems. I don't think it has anything to do with ego...I'm about 9 years post-op and the only problem I have is I never quite got my full range of motion back, mainly due to being 16 at the time and not caring as much as I should have.
Old    Scott (chilidog)      Join Date: Dec 2007       03-08-2009, 6:06 PM Reply   
I had an ACL replacement about 9 years ago. My knee has since popped out and in again so many times I can't count. I rehabbed it well and didn't dirtbike or do any water sports on it for a year after surgery, and its still messed up forever, I've learned to live with it, pretty sure its a cartilage problem though, ACL is just stretched out like everything else, which in my opinion helps me from tearing stuff, it is just so loose it pops out and in again and doesn't blow out anything, I call it a "sprain" every time it happens...
I don't wear a brace for anything, probably would prevent the big blow out though...
Old    gangstar (joe_crawley)      Join Date: Jan 2007       03-08-2009, 8:12 PM Reply   
^^^^^ HOLY !#%@

Are you out for a while after you dislocate it or is it just short pain? That sucks and it's pretty gnarly at the same time.

Took me about 6 months to get on water and 1 year to feel 100%. You won't feel 100% until you slam on it though, that will be the real confidence builder.
Old    Caleb Rountree (dlwsrider)      Join Date: Apr 2007       03-08-2009, 9:43 PM Reply   
Ponders, who is your Ortho guy?

I use the same guy Baker does, and he is great.
Old    np3 (ponder86)      Join Date: Mar 2008       03-09-2009, 12:15 AM Reply   
It's dr. knoxx out of mtn. home, he is the same guy out that did my ankle surgery a long time ago
Old    Brett Guerin (brett_cti_knee_braces)      Join Date: Feb 2009       03-09-2009, 11:36 AM Reply   
First off, the amount of Docs that won't prescribe a brace is pretty small. They are the minority. Most agree that a brace will dramatically reduce your chances of re-injury (especially the high-end sports med docs) and that they provide exoskeletal support that absorb much of the negative forces that would otherwise be absorbed by the knee.
A knee brace would become like a crutch if you lived in it 24-7. You need to exercise and strengthen that whole region of your body to get it back to it's pre-injury state. Hopefully, your rehab and training allow you to slowly ween yourself off a brace for the majority of the activities you do in your life. Eventually, maybe even ween off it for wakeboarding.
Keep this in mind. There are a ton of people blowing out their knees wakeboarding right? That is because you are putting such unnatural forces on your knees. Docs don't understand how gnarly the sport has gotten. If you blew out a normal healthy knee.... what makes you think that you won't blow out a reconstructed one if you continue to do the same thing? Docs can do an insane job nowadays fixing up a knee... but I don't think that they can make it stronger than it was before you injured it.
Old    Steve McKim (mbsteez)      Join Date: May 2005       03-09-2009, 11:50 AM Reply   
Does the brace actually absorb the force? Or does it just transfer it away from the knee to some other joint? I know with wrist guards and snowboarding, I tell people I'd never wear wrist guards because the energy has to go somewhere and if its a bad fall, you'll snap your forearm rather than just break your wrist. I heard the amount of tape that football players use on their ankles contributes to knee injuries?
Old    M-Dizzle (liquidmx)      Join Date: Jun 2005       03-09-2009, 11:52 AM Reply   
Agreed with everything Brett said. I ONLY use my braces in areas where I am going to push myself: Wakeboarding, Snowboarding, and the occasional trampoline session. Everything else is w/o brace. I will wakesurf without the brace, as well as many other physical activities...Basically using it sparingly where I think the opportunity for injury presents itself. I agree that the comment about a "crutch" applies if you use it "more often than not" where I am without brace "more often than not". For those of us with good work ethics and the ability to exercise self restraint I think a brace is a good thing.

In fact post injury my legs are far stronger than they ever were before my injury. By tearing my ACL I learned that I needed to spend more time in the gym strengthening my leg muscles as well as paying more attention to my form while riding and re-evaluating how I spent my time in the gym and what exercises I was doing.

Edit to post above: Yes to an extent any brace will transfer the forces if they are strong enough. The knee is a wink link designed to break before something like the femur. Again, why choosing to wear a brace is a personal decision.

(Message edited by liquidmx on March 09, 2009)
Old    gangstar (joe_crawley)      Join Date: Jan 2007       03-09-2009, 12:15 PM Reply   
"Most agree that a brace will dramatically reduce your chances of re-injury"

This is not totally true, and has been documented in sports medicine journals. In fact an improperly fit brace increases the likelyhood for injury. Braces work well for people with less than 100% strength and stability. If you have a strong stable leg you don't need a brace, and in fact most doctors (including all that I saw- who all perform ACL surgeries for west Michigan college and professional sports teams) said I would be doing myself a disservice with a brace

Seriously, if they worked, pro football players (besided linemen), basketball players, soccer players, snowboarders and skiers would use them- it would be a no brainer. They don't.
Old    Gene Williams (gene3x)      Join Date: Apr 2005       03-09-2009, 1:35 PM Reply   
Just because some professional atheletes do not wear a brace post injury, that somehow leads to the conclusion that it may hurt them? Think about what you just said Joe. The reason they do not wear it is because it may limit their athletic ability to a point that they lose a competition maybe but I am pretty sure they have enough professional attention to wear it properly.

Everything the Brett says makes total sense. I talked to my surgeon (who BTW works on the Dallas Cowboys and other professional athletic teams hear) at length about this at length. He said at first that he did not think that wearing a brace made much of a difference except psychologically. When I pressed him on the "much of a difference" he admitted that it believed it could prevent and injury vs. not having one but that it is unlikely that it would cause one. He added "but anything is can happen under any specific set of circumstances".

The way I see it: Providing any extra support in any high impact area can help to prevent an injury. Extra support can rarely hurt you in terms of injury preventative. In terms of personal performance they may hurt performance overall while helping to limit a force that may be dangerous.
Old    M-Dizzle (liquidmx)      Join Date: Jun 2005       03-09-2009, 1:41 PM Reply   
Well, its clearly obvious that anything you wear that is "improperly fitted" will increase the ability to get hurt...that's just logical whether its a knee brace, shoe, cleat, or shin guard.

As far as soccer players are concerned...I am relatively certain its illegal to wear a knee brace (at least when I played) without modifying it to "soft status". When I played with a soft cast on my arm I had to cover it with cotton bedding to make it soft and legal (which resulted in a 8" wide forearm which was a pain to run in). Even then the opposing team had to check it out and approve before I was allowed onto the field. We also could not wear jewelry of any kind. In 14yrs of soccer I never played against anyone wearing a hard knee brace that wasnt covered with duct tape and padding...which would suck to wear.
Old    Steve McKim (mbsteez)      Join Date: May 2005       03-09-2009, 2:24 PM Reply   
I preferred to rehab my legs and keep them stronger than they were before, and not wear a brace. I wore my brace for the summer following my operation in October (I was a competitive water skier at the time), but I never wore it again after that summer. That included all my high school sports during the fall and winter. Of course, now that I've been part of this thread, I'll probably do it again this year. I also did ruptured my right Achilles year ago and was back on the water in July.

(Message edited by mbsteez on March 09, 2009)
Old    Brett Guerin (brett_cti_knee_braces)      Join Date: Feb 2009       03-09-2009, 3:47 PM Reply   

As you are aware, I said "most agree". And, that implies a properly fit brace. Of course not all docs are going to agree on something like this. You can't even get them to agree on what types of procedures are best? Cadaver vs. graft, etc.?
The docs that really dig in and learn about these sports are the ones that usually endorse bracing. They understand how gnarly the negative forces of the sport are and want to protect their investment (the procedure you had done) and don't look at it as a lack in faith of their work.

Also, in certain sports, the cost of a brace (the weight, loss of mobility, etc) doesn't outweigh the benefits of wearing one. Obviously, a sprinter wouldn't be able to compete at the same level as his competition if he was wearing a rigid ligament brace. His chance of re-injury (if properly healed) isn't as great as someone who wakeboards (or any sport that has common unnatural forces to the knee), so he probably wouldn't wear one for long. A down lineman can wear one without it dramatically effecting performance, so they do. While a skill position in football may or may not, so, sometimes they do and sometimes they don't. Often it is a matter of how likely you are to get re-injured. It isn't always... if it happened once, it can happen again. You just need to look at the sport you do and how aggressively you do it. Then decide if your risk for re-injury is there or not.

If there is one thing I have learned working in Orthopedics over the last 8 years it is this... nothing can be 100% proven and different things work for different people. So, you have to take everyone's opinions, advice, theories, etc... and come up with your own conclusion. What do I think would work best for me.
Old    Brett Guerin (brett_cti_knee_braces)      Join Date: Feb 2009       03-09-2009, 4:12 PM Reply   
A brace can do both. It absorbs and redistributes. Hopefully, when it redistributes the negative force it is spread over a large enough area and reduced so that it doesn't cause a different injury. But yes, it is completely possible. Typically, those injuries aren't worse than the one you avoided by wearing a brace.
Old    gangstar (joe_crawley)      Join Date: Jan 2007       03-09-2009, 4:26 PM Reply   
Gene/Brett- I agree 100%

Like you, I looked at my options, saw 3 different docs, read up on it, and I'm comfortable and very happy to not need or wear a brace. That's me, not anyone else, many others may need a brace, and I suggest they discuss it with at least two doctors to help make the decision. I think wakeworld is a great resource and I think everybody has valuable insight- I'm just worried about the 17 year old kid reading this with great knees deciding he should wear a brace because of the discussion when that would be a disaster.
Old    Gene Williams (gene3x)      Join Date: Apr 2005       03-09-2009, 4:36 PM Reply   
I see your point.
Old    Steve McKim (mbsteez)      Join Date: May 2005       03-09-2009, 5:02 PM Reply   
Brett, that makes sense.
Joe, thats my feeling as well.


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