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Returning to skiing after shattering femur

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

I shattered my femur skiing 2 years ago. I will admit I was not a good skier, I couldn't do the turns very well so I would just ski straight down, what a rush it was, that is until I hit an edge and was sent into a wooden post resulting in a shattered femur. That was the most intense pain I have ever felt. I now am the proud owner of a metal rod in my leg and a few screws. The recovery was hell, I am not a person that is still for long so being laid up was awful. It took a long time to recover. I was given the go ahead this past July to finally start working out and start rebuilding my strength and the ok to ski again if I wanted to. This time around I am taking my time learning the ropes right from the begining, I am working in my turns and not doing to bad now. I am only on the green hills because I am concentrating on getting the turning and stopping down pat, being in control of my skiing. I last about 1 1/2 hours on the slopes right now before my muscles in my leg start to get sore and feel weak. It is frustrating as I still have a ways to go before my leg is strong again but I am determined. Fmail and friends think i am nuts after what happened to ski again but I do love it, never will I bomb staright down the hills again straight like a speed demon but love the feel of skiing down the slopes, being outside and the great exercise.

Has anyone else gone back to skiing after a femur break and how long did it take to get all the strength back again?

any great tips for exercises, I am doing a lot of squats and leg lifts with weights right now. The break has healed around the IM rod but there is some bone missing right where I shattered it which if after 2 years hasn't grown back I doubt it ever will, there is a space in the bone.

The first time back skiing this year since I did it I was terrified and I only hit the bunny hills LOL but doing better not so nervous now but I do worry about falling as my leg still hurts right at the spot where I shattered it if it is hit or bumped. The fear I have now is about falling and it hurting. I got over being scared of the snow fence posts which is what I hit by skiing to them slowly as I practise my turns and knowing never again do I want to meet up with one. Those suckers are the same size as the posts I have on my deck. In all I push through the fear and nerves and keep focused on learning the finer points of skiing and as they say getting right back on the horse that threw me off.

Happy ski season!!!

post #2 of 10

Sounds like your doing it the right way, learning how to control your skis instead of bombing out of control. Your physical therapist should be able to recommend some great workouts to increase your leg strength again and get you in ski shape. If you dont have an instructor i highly recommend one, good luck and have fun!

post #3 of 10
Thread Starter 

I am very excited as I have my 1st ski lesson today. I cannot wait!!! I am not longer in physio, that ended this summer when my surgeon gave me the go ahead to start using weights and siad if I wanted to I could ski this winter but to be careful because he didnt want to see me again. I am hopping the ski instructor can help me fine tune my turns as my back up hill ski is wobbly when I am going into turns. I also have to keep fighting the fear I now have as I now know just how much it can hurt when you have a ski accident. Shattering the femur has been the worst pain I have ever felt and I certainly don't want to feel that again! I am determined to be able to ski properly and safely and also to combat the fear. Friends all think I am crazy to want to try again but you have to fight your fears if you enjoy doing something even after a bad accident.

I am not sure if some of the control is harder since my strength in the leg isnt 100% but skiing is going to help rebuild that strength I figure. Hope everyone has a great ski day!

post #4 of 10

I also busted a femur 3" below my hip less than a year ago w/39 years of skiing exp. since age 4..  I am cleared to ski but havn't yet.. "PNW conditions" hoping it improves later this week!!

I ordered some POC padded race shorts (for skiiers) and would suggest  looking into some sort of padding to protect the area in pain if possible..  I tried on a pair of Pro Tech padded shorts and felt like a poorly fitting diaper so don't waste your time or cash..  

 

feel free to pm for any questions you may have..  J.

post #5 of 10
Thread Starter 

I have seen the ski shorts with the protective padding and was wondering if they would help and how they would feel. The area I need to cover on my thigh is the outer thigh as that is where it hurts the most to hit and where it shattered. thinking of trying a few out but if anyone has tried them which ones feel the best?

post #6 of 10

As far as the padded shorts go, you'll just have to try them on to see which ones will offer the best protection. Brands will vary in the placement of the padding as well as the type of padding used.

 

If you are feeling weak, try finding a sports specific PT. You shouldn't have been relased from PT until you have passed test for mobility and strength. If you feel you need more strength, a visit with a sports specific PT can provide you with a regimen of continued exercise.  You acould alternatively try your local rec/fitness center for a personal trainer to work on sport specific exercises that will help you gain the strength you need to ski well. Additionally, ski instruction will make you more efficient in skiing and which will eventually result in greater endurance.

 

You are brave to return to skiing. Congratulations on making the move to improve skiing. The rewards appear to already be evident to you. As you work to improve you will re-discover the thrill of skiing and likely become even more enthralled by the sensations of skiing in control in places you couldn't imagine skiing before.

 

MR 

post #7 of 10
Thread Starter 

Thanks! I will look into finding ski shorts. I have been doing exercises since July/10 when the doc gave me the ok to go ahead and start using weights. The balance is better than it was and the strength is coming I just don't feel it is as strong as it could be. Not sure what is in our area but I am sure I can find some sports training exercise programs. thanks for the info

and skiing is amazing, yes I have now learned it can hurt a whole lot but it is so worth it to get back up there and ski, it is the rush and feeling of freedom that I love as come down. I am happy to say this weekend I skied the "leg breaker" totally scared as I stood there getting ready to ski down but I did it and felt so happy for facing the fear!

cheers to a few more ski weeks left!

post #8 of 10
Thread Starter 

a friend says I should just make them myself, he is a jack of all trades and says there are materials you can use for padding and make a custom pair so I may try that and see how it goes. so far I have been skiing with no padding on the thigh and it hasnt been too bad just worried about that hard spill 'casue that will smart!

post #9 of 10


Quote:

Originally Posted by brokenskigirl View Post

I shattered my femur skiing 2 years ago.

Has anyone else gone back to skiing after a femur break and how long did it take to get all the strength back again?

any great tips for exercises, I am doing a lot of squats and leg lifts with weights right now. The break has healed around the IM rod but there is some bone missing right where I shattered it which if after 2 years hasn't grown back I doubt it ever will, there is a space in the bone.

...

Happy ski season!!!

bone should eventually fill in... it may take some time

I had a break on the head of the femur just a few years back, from some crazy-ass cycling (my fault, my stoopid move, in a long list of stoopid moves and resulting injuries...), took some time to get over that - but it happens...

weight work, done with good instruction, is always excellent.

I also can recommend Plyometrics as a way to build structural strength in the muscles without the stress of heavy weights.

Cycling - especially starting with medium to light gears - is tremendous both for steady building of muscles and the the cardio needed so one tires less quickly...

and of course, core work is always major in any fitness program... what you do for the core is directly linked to how your legs and arms work. ignore the core and be in peril of further injuries to the extremities.

 

serious injury should, hopefully, create a dedication to greater health and fitness, focus to what really matters to a person...

allowing for that occasional beer and pizza...

YES!

Happy Ski Season !!!
 

 

post #10 of 10

I would suggest that the shorter the ski you use, the less torque there will be on that leg.

 

Congrats on getting back on that horse, war wounds and all. Old ski injury scars and stories are good hot tub topics.

 

I bet you're pretty good at weather forecasting now too.

 

One good thing is that it didn't break at the boot cuff and your rod and pins don't interfere with wearing ski boots.

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