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Life After ACL Reconstruction

post #1 of 356
Thread Starter 

Happy New Year, and as words of encouragement to any folks that are currently in the various stages of knee injury rehab I wanted to share that today was my 200th ski day after my ACL reconstruction surgery in 2008 - so there is indeed life after!

post #2 of 356

Congrats!  Cheers

post #3 of 356

Nice to hear.  Almost a year since the injury and have done 4 ski days.  Gonna crank it up.

post #4 of 356
Thread Starter 

Hope everyone working through an ACL Recon or other injury stays with it, because you will be back out there better than ever!

 

Adversities are merely pathways to your growth!

 

As encouragement here is a quick video of my 229th ski day on my ACL Recon, on some fun tracked-out fresh snow atop hardpack:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DFjBqVO7uJE&list=UUltljKJelagRniomJobeTeg&index=1&feature=plcp

post #5 of 356

smile.gifI am so happy I found your blog! I am really worried & nervous since I was in Oregon & I tore my ACL skiing & my ACL reconstruction surgery will be performed on Tuesday so.....I am more worried about the long term effects of my knee & skiing...how are you feeling today? how was your 1st day skiing after ACL reconstruction surgery? btw which graft did you had?

post #6 of 356

Welcome to Epic!

 

The first day skiing post reconstruction can be a little troublesome.  Most of it coming from doubt and wondering if you will fall again.  Start slow, on nice easy runs and you'll probably see you were worrying for nothing.  This of course is provided you follow your prescribed recovery plan and have built the strength back up.  I've torn both ACL's at different times and even though I knew better the second time (from previous experience) I was still overly cautious, but it did go away after one run.

 

To get to full recovery is a long road but you can get there.  Both my legs are stronger than prior to the first injury and I'm more aware of what can cause it.  I am able to ski as hard as I want.  My particular knees don't like a lot of pounding but others have no issue with it.  In both knees I've had multiple injuries so there is more than just the acl reconstruction to deal with.

 

As a point of reference, I had acl reconstruction on my right knee 3/31/2011 and was skiing the December 8th 2011.  Would have been out sooner but there wasn't any snow.  I skied/raced 53 days this year.  Most all of them full days as I was working and training.  I also skied in the bumps (not well but that's a different issue).

 

There are some things I try to avoid; choppy ice, hockey stops, nasty ruts etc.  Anything that will cause my knees to do a sticcato bounce.  They don't like that at all.  Again, that is my particular knees and they have a more than just the acl reconstruction. to deal with.

 

Feel free to ask questions.  There is a wealth of information here.

post #7 of 356

I`ve had 2- Nov `08 and May `11, same knee.  Got about 180 days skiing between surgeries and have 7 since the second surgery.  While I wouldn`t wish it on a friend, there are certainly a lot worse things that can happen and it motivated me to get into the gym more working on strength, flexibility and balance which has likely improved my skiing.

 

I have some video up of my 5th and 6th days skiing since my second surgery as well as some pics from the 4th day and some pics and 1 video between the two surgeries.  http://www.epicski.com/t/111658/mefree-ma-nastar-and-free-skiing#post_1450136

 

Lots of info on the site for those who may need it.

post #8 of 356

Good to hear. Since this is a gear forum, and since I don't have a blown ACL, but am missing most everything else in one knee, thought it would be interesting to trade ideas on which gear you have found to be most knee friendly. 

 

I've always liked damp skis, clear back to early Rossi's with VAS, but my knees really want smooth skis and a smooth style these days. Beyond the obvious moves, like limiting air to very short, necessary, and soft snow (parks are a non-no), and serious gym work, my own experience has been:

 

1) Smooth and damp are good, but heavy may not be. Makes sense from a physics POV, all that angular momentum out at the end of your leg. So I used to be big on Head's, Stocklis, have moved more toward middle weight skis like Kastles or Dynastars that are still known for their dampness but are not tanks. Have become lighter on my feet, more finesse, higher edge angles allow the ski to slice instead of jolt. 

 

2) Sharper edges help. I've all about 1/3 now for everything except serious powder. I don't want my edges coming undone and deciding to go their own direction when I hit rough surfaces. You're more likely to cut yourself on a dull knife...

 

3) Lessons help. I've taken a slew since my knees really began to go south. The better I ski, the less force on my joints and muscles. And the lower likelihood that I'll make a twisting backward fall. Yes, obviously it can happen to any level skier. (Sadly, even U.S. Ski Team) But IMO it will happen more to intermediates who are trying out more difficult terrain, get thrown backwards, weight on wrong edge. 

 

4) Bumps are actually fine once you learn how to ski them as if the troughs are full of flaming napalm. In fact, I go out of my way to do bumps a few runs each day, just for muscle memory, so that if I get caught above a field of bumps at the bottom of some great chute or face, I won't have to take the rest of the week off. In heavy chop or slush, an "impact turn" like Dawgcatching talks about in another thread works well; exaggerated extension, absorb the back of the bump as you sink, then big extension as you crest, so that you're unweighted just before you start to turn. Hold. Repeat. This takes practice if you grew up zippering semi out of control; I'm still working on it. 

 

5) I pay attention to bindings. While I tell anatomically normal people all bindings work fine, I will only ski in Tyrolias with diagonal heels or Look Pivots. No, I don't think that they will prevent many types of injury any better than the rest of the field. But my knees tell me that they feel better when I'm coming out hard. And my anatomy courses tell me that certain designs at the heel will reduce the load on the knee during certain classes of falls. Being closer to the axis of the tibia is good. Having more elasticity is good. IMO a tiny bit of advantage in a fall is better than just playing the odds. I'm still watching the Knee Binding, to see if it's what's claimed. 

 

6) Boots count. Something with more ability to flex at the ankle means less force at the knee to accomplish the same thing with an ankle locked by stiffness. I've found that a softer flex and more upright angle seem to make my knees happier. Partly, this also reflects the potential of the boot to absorb shocks instead of transmitting them. Three piece designs are especially good at this. 

 

7) Ibuprofen is my friend. biggrin.gif

 

 

post #9 of 356

Did mine in 2005 (two days after I bough a new pair of skies).  Started skiing again in December 2006.  First couple of days back were a bit weird, but like someone else said, it was probably just mental.  I actually fell (to my "bad" side) right after getting off the lift and started freaking out that I won't be able to ski :).  Been skiing fine since.  I did mine playing soccer, so never really had that fear of re-injuring it while skiing.

 

One thing that doesn't work for me is taking breaks on the slopes.  Knee seems to hate going back after a lunch (i guess it's because it cools off, and then takes it a while to get going again).  In general staying hydrated and keeping the weight down seems to help too.  As simple as it may sound just listen to the doctors right after the surgery, and do what they say.  I thought that hitting the gym and building the leg up was huge.

 

.

post #10 of 356
Thread Starter 

Welcome to Epic! I was back on skis around 8 months post surgery and that first day it was snowing with poor visibility. I could barely see and was firmly holding back while skiing very slowly and very defensively, and it was just plain awful. I called it quits after only a couple of runs, and was happy to just get back out there, and get my first day out of the way. Thankfully the second day was clear visibility and I could see the next spot to turn ahead, and just let my skis run there at a moderate pace - which was huge since I didn't have to hold back defensively and the skis would just track there. That second day gave me the confidence to know that little would upset my skis, and I was able to build on that in the future with more and more confidence each day.

 

My first 14 days were in very soft (Lange 80) "rehab" boots - trying to be as gentle on my allograft as possible while re-learning/strengthening, though not really sure whether it helped or not. It was tiring, and I found I had to move a lot fore/aft to make my skis respond through the soft boots. When I went back to normal stiffer boots I found skiing a lot less tiring. At a minimum on the 15th day I appreciated that I'd given my muscles a workout using those soft boots. On that 15th day I started using KneeBindings, and have been ever since hoping they would afford me some extra knee protection - plenty on KneeBindings elsewhere. My point here isn't so much about equipment (though in my case these early equipment choices helped my head, so were of head value for me), but really about getting back on skis and consistently building confidence each day until you're back to skiing with a clear head!

post #11 of 356

It's not a bad idea not to rush it.  I skied for the first time about 15 months after my surgery (partially because of the timing).  I did not think that it's worth getting back too early, and risk another 6-12 months off.

post #12 of 356


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by beyond View Post

Good to hear. Since this is a gear forum, and since I don't have a blown ACL, but am missing most everything else in one knee, thought it would be interesting to trade ideas on which gear you have found to be most knee friendly. 

 

I've always liked damp skis, clear back to early Rossi's with VAS, but my knees really want smooth skis and a smooth style these days. Beyond the obvious moves, like limiting air to very short, necessary, and soft snow (parks are a non-no), and serious gym work, my own experience has been:

 

1) Smooth and damp are good, but heavy may not be. Makes sense from a physics POV, all that angular momentum out at the end of your leg. So I used to be big on Head's, Stocklis, have moved more toward middle weight skis like Kastles or Dynastars that are still known for their dampness but are not tanks. Have become lighter on my feet, more finesse, higher edge angles allow the ski to slice instead of jolt. 

 

2) Sharper edges help. I've all about 1/3 now for everything except serious powder. I don't want my edges coming undone and deciding to go their own direction when I hit rough surfaces. You're more likely to cut yourself on a dull knife...

 

3) Lessons help. I've taken a slew since my knees really began to go south. The better I ski, the less force on my joints and muscles. And the lower likelihood that I'll make a twisting backward fall. Yes, obviously it can happen to any level skier. (Sadly, even U.S. Ski Team) But IMO it will happen more to intermediates who are trying out more difficult terrain, get thrown backwards, weight on wrong edge. 

 

4) Bumps are actually fine once you learn how to ski them as if the troughs are full of flaming napalm. In fact, I go out of my way to do bumps a few runs each day, just for muscle memory, so that if I get caught above a field of bumps at the bottom of some great chute or face, I won't have to take the rest of the week off. In heavy chop or slush, an "impact turn" like Dawgcatching talks about in another thread works well; exaggerated extension, absorb the back of the bump as you sink, then big extension as you crest, so that you're unweighted just before you start to turn. Hold. Repeat. This takes practice if you grew up zippering semi out of control; I'm still working on it. 

 

5) I pay attention to bindings. While I tell anatomically normal people all bindings work fine, I will only ski in Tyrolias with diagonal heels or Look Pivots. No, I don't think that they will prevent many types of injury any better than the rest of the field. But my knees tell me that they feel better when I'm coming out hard. And my anatomy courses tell me that certain designs at the heel will reduce the load on the knee during certain classes of falls. Being closer to the axis of the tibia is good. Having more elasticity is good. IMO a tiny bit of advantage in a fall is better than just playing the odds. I'm still watching the Knee Binding, to see if it's what's claimed. 

 

6) Boots count. Something with more ability to flex at the ankle means less force at the knee to accomplish the same thing with an ankle locked by stiffness. I've found that a softer flex and more upright angle seem to make my knees happier. Partly, this also reflects the potential of the boot to absorb shocks instead of transmitting them. Three piece designs are especially good at this. 

 

7) Ibuprofen is my friend. biggrin.gif

 

 

 

Great post, Beyond.  Wish you would have posted it a few years ago!  You could have saved me a lot or experimentation.  Through trial and error, and what feels best to me, I am now skiing Dynastar's and Kastle, and use the Dalbello 3 piece boot.  I also agree with your sentiments on ski weight.  Two of my Dynastars have the Look Pivots.  I set the DIN on them as low as I can - I have to be able to comfortably twist out or pop the heel, but I have not had issues with pre-release.   I am still trying to improve and refine my knee friendly approach to skiing, so any more equipment or technique tips are welcome.

 

If you have any video of the bump style you described, that is where I need some work.  I have no interest in a zipper line through bumps, but more of a meandering, chillin', flowing style.  This, I need to work on.

 

For the purpose of this thread, I have had two ACL's replaced (1988 and 1991).  As far as I know, both ACLs are still intact.  Left knee has had 4 sugeries, including the ACL, cartilage, and other soft tissue trauma.   I can't really can't give a perspective on skiing before and after the injuries, because I have not been skiing that long.  I haven't hit 200 days in all my skiing (I am below 100 days), and 99 percent of that has been well after my surgeries.  I do all activities with a heightened "knee awareness".  They function, they just need a bit more TLC and sometimes I need to adapt or favor them in some way. 

 

Current ACL repair techniques are good.  Anyone getting their knee rebuilt now (mine were rebuilt 20 plus years ago), can reasonably expect to return to 100 percent of their pre-injury functionality and maybe better, due to physical therapy and rehab.

 

Best of luck to all those going through it.  There is light at the end of the tunnel.
 

 

post #13 of 356
Quote:
Originally Posted by skidding View Post

If you have any video of the bump style you described, that is where I need some work.  I have no interest in a zipper line through bumps, but more of a meandering, chillin', flowing style.  This, I need to work on.


Hi - There are a set of sequential stills in the Gear Review Forum, Head REV 105 thread, showing Dawgcatching doing this; he's been getting help from Holiday, who's an instructor. My sense is that any Level III can teach this if they're at a place with enough bumps. If you ever get back to the NE, Epic teaches at Stowe, does bumps in trees like water flowing downhill. He'd be a resource. I've been working on this at Killington, also some good resources. Out where you are, if you ever get up to the Land Of The Enemy (I went to U of M, but will be cheering for OS this weekend of course biggrin.gif ) Boyne in the UP has plenty of steepish bumps, good place to take lessons. Can't speak to Ohio per se. You might go to Instruction Forum, post a thread asking for folks from your area. Good luck! 

post #14 of 356
Quote:
Originally Posted by beyond View Post


Hi - There are a set of sequential stills in the Gear Review Forum, Head REV 105 thread, showing Dawgcatching doing this; he's been getting help from Holiday, who's an instructor. My sense is that any Level III can teach this if they're at a place with enough bumps. If you ever get back to the NE, Epic teaches at Stowe, does bumps in trees like water flowing downhill. He'd be a resource. I've been working on this at Killington, also some good resources. Out where you are, if you ever get up to the Land Of The Enemy (I went to U of M, but will be cheering for OS this weekend of course biggrin.gif ) Boyne in the UP has plenty of steepish bumps, good place to take lessons. Can't speak to Ohio per se. You might go to Instruction Forum, post a thread asking for folks from your area. Good luck! 


Thanks, Beyond.  I will check out the Head REV 105 thread.  My local ski areas barely had enough snow and time to develop much in the way of bumps this year.  I had planned a spring road trip to Boyne and Nubs (about now), but the warm weather had them shut down by about 3/20.  I am not too hardcore about calling MI the enemy, since I did not grow up here.  Given the choice, I'd rather live in MI than OH (don't tell).  I'll be watching Saturday and hoping they win though.  Go Bucks! 

 

post #15 of 356

Moved from Gear Discusions to Fitness Injury and Recovery forum based on topic.

 

Carry on.

post #16 of 356

right knee popped Jan 2 2012, had surgery feb. 1, 2012 and now just watching the snow fall :-). nice to hear from those who have endured the surgery and healing. I'll probably hold off till start of next season; although late august at hood does seem tempting, but not really worth the risk. In about three weeks I'll be able to start road biking again, at least I can get out and move. I plan on skiing at first with the Donjoy brace, although I understand you don't have to wear it but seems like a good idea to me for the first few days.

post #17 of 356
Thread Starter 

I think braces definitely are a piece of equipment that can for some people help your head to stay quiet, and if they do that for you that's great, because so much of getting back out there after an injury is about what's going on in your head. I have heard a lot about how braces don't help statistically, but then the very same ACL Recons are often braced in professional athletes. Some surgeons are pro-brace and some don't care. Either way there is still huge value if it quiets negative thoughts in your head.

 

Another thing is to not artificially limit what you think you can do on skis, just because you've had an ACL Recon! Just start off reasonably, proceed, and keep building up. I've truly enjoyed skiing moguls, race courses, alpine touring/skinning, and even steep climbing (boot packing) and then skiing the Tuckerman Ravine after my ACL Recon. Try to keep an open mind and build on each experience!

post #18 of 356

I would like to add another thought on the braces.  My surgeon for the most part is against them because people think it helps protect them from injury (I think that was his reason).  He did prescribe them to me because I had too many issues not to.  I found that they help limit fatigue and minimize the jarring around they would get normally.  I know I can handle more skiing and harder skiing when I wear them.

 

I also recently added the Opedix tights and I'm thrilled with the combo; tights and braces. Kind of like belts and suspenders but I haven't had any issues.


Edited by L&AirC - 3/31/12 at 10:43am
post #19 of 356
Quote:
Originally Posted by L&AirC View Post

I would like to add another thought on the braces. 

 

Here are my thoughts on braces.  Most say braces are unnecessary and the muscles, tendons, and ligaments do far more to keep the knee intact.  I agree, you need good muscle balance.  That said, I wear basic, drugstore type ACE knee braces when I ski.  These are just the simple elastic pull on brace with supports down the side and a the hole cut out for the knee cap.  Why?  They make me feel better, so it is a personal, head thing.  I like the feel of the compression on the knees.  They also heighten my "knee awareness" that I referenced in an earlier post.  Muscles are great, but if I am getting fatigued or a muscle doesn't fire fast enough, I like to have a little extra protection.  Maybe it is BS, but it makes me feel better while skiing.  YMMV.

 

I would like to try the Opedix tights sometime.  Wish I had remembered to enter the contest.

 

post #20 of 356

I assume you are looking for feedback on ACL specific braces?  the 2 big guns out there are the Donjoy Defiance http://www.donjoy.com/index.asp/fuseaction/products.detail/cat/1/id/20 and the Ossur CTI braces, both are customs.  http://www.braceability.com/ossur-cti-ots-ligament-knee-brace  .  For an ACL brace to protect, it really should to be professionally fitted. If it doesn't sit correctly on the knee, it won't protect you.  

 

Buying a neoprene wrap or even a wrap with metal hinged bands is not going to adequately protect or support an unstable knee. Remember, it really comes down to instability. (always listen to your doctor) 

post #21 of 356
Had reconstruction on 3/8/12. Doc says return to sports is usually in 6 months. I hope to be at Copper in Nov. For the folks who returned to racing, how long after surgery (or a return to snow) did you start racing? I'm talking about NASTAR or adult league racing. I can hold off on Masters for a while. Obviously this is assuming no major setbacks and hard work in PT.
post #22 of 356
Quote:
Originally Posted by Finndog View Post

I assume you are looking for feedback on ACL specific braces?  the 2 big guns out there are the Donjoy Defiance http://www.donjoy.com/index.asp/fuseaction/products.detail/cat/1/id/20 and the Ossur CTI braces, both are customs.  http://www.braceability.com/ossur-cti-ots-ligament-knee-brace  .  For an ACL brace to protect, it really should to be professionally fitted. If it doesn't sit correctly on the knee, it won't protect you.  

 

Buying a neoprene wrap or even a wrap with metal hinged bands is not going to adequately protect or support an unstable knee. Remember, it really comes down to instability. (always listen to your doctor) 

 

 

I'll throw BREG into the mix.  The folks that started DONJOY sold that off and started BREG.  I have two BREG's and love them.

 

When I was getting them fitted, the fitter said that for men it is usually more of a small, medium and large set up since men tend to run fairly standard.  Women on the other hand are all over the place and tend to get customization. 

 

Mine are off the shelf and fit perfect.  So though I had them professionally fitted, I have a standard size brace.
 

Along with it being fitted properly, you also have to wear it properly or it won't work right.

 

 

post #23 of 356

HEY!  that's my surgery date too  icon14.gif

 

FWIW- I was told that you should be back by next season without limitations if all goes as it should.  Don't skimp on rehab My PT told me I could cruise groomers after 6 months but would wait 9 months for hard charging in either Skiing or mtn biking.  Remember, we aren't allowed to fall for the next 6 months.  I continue to be paranoid in crowds, around children and dogs. biggrin.gif
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by clfjmpr View Post

Had reconstruction on 3/8/12. Doc says return to sports is usually in 6 months. I hope to be at Copper in Nov. For the folks who returned to racing, how long after surgery (or a return to snow) did you start racing? I'm talking about NASTAR or adult league racing. I can hold off on Masters for a while. Obviously this is assuming no major setbacks and hard work in PT.


 

post #24 of 356

Cant' agree entirely with this. My donjon had measurements for upper calf specifically where the tibia meets the Femur, width of knee at the mid-point of the patella and quad head. the brace is fit rather exacting. My Dr. told me it had to fit exactly correct (and as you point out, worn correctly) or it would not fully protect the ACL. I asked if I could just buy one on line and was told absolutely no.I did not get a "small, medium or large" brace. I am sure that for the most part, the brace is off the shelf but its not entirely the case.  I fortunately have insurance so the brace cost me $100.00.  If you have insurance, go that route and get one fit for you. If you don't, make sure it fits as close to custom as you can get. It has to fit very snug and precisely. Make sure you get a clear explanation of how to wear it. On the DonJoy the straps are numbered for sequence of tightening but you need to understand where to position the brace on your knee and how tight it should be worn. 
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by L&AirC View Post

 

 

I'll throw BREG into the mix.  The folks that started DONJOY sold that off and started BREG.  I have two BREG's and love them.

 

When I was getting them fitted, the fitter said that for men it is usually more of a small, medium and large set up since men tend to run fairly standard.  Women on the other hand are all over the place and tend to get customization. 

 

Mine are off the shelf and fit perfect.  So though I had them professionally fitted, I have a standard size brace.
 

Along with it being fitted properly, you also have to wear it properly or it won't work right.

 

 



 

post #25 of 356
Quote:
Originally Posted by Finndog View Post

Cant' agree entirely with this. My donjon had measurements for upper calf specifically where the tibia meets the Femur, width of knee at the mid-point of the patella and quad head. the brace is fit rather exacting. My Dr. told me it had to fit exactly correct (and as you point out, worn correctly) or it would not fully protect the ACL. I asked if I could just buy one on line and was told absolutely no.I did not get a "small, medium or large" brace. I am sure that for the most part, the brace is off the shelf but its not entirely the case.  I fortunately have insurance so the brace cost me $100.00.  If you have insurance, go that route and get one fit for you. If you don't, make sure it fits as close to custom as you can get. It has to fit very snug and precisely. Make sure you get a clear explanation of how to wear it. On the DonJoy the straps are numbered for sequence of tightening but you need to understand where to position the brace on your knee and how tight it should be worn. 
 



 



Not meaning to quibble and maybe were are talking past each other.  I agree it has to fit perfectly but the fitter (not sure what their title is but he's been doing this and making prosthetics for over 30 years and is Board Certified in this field) told me that the owners of BREG (that started DONJOY) created a database with tens of thousands of leg measurements and men's leg measurements aren't that different.  He also stated that most of the adjustment comes from the straps but it is easy to bend the metal for comfort.  He did make a metal bending adjustment for me because it was pressing on my shin.  I also have a life time of free adjustments from him.

 

Why is it so hard to accept that men's legs and specifically the center of the leg aren't so vastly different that everything has to be custom made yet you can buy shoes or ski boots that come in standard sizes and then fine tune them.

 

Both Donjoy and Breg take the same measurements (according to their sites); 6 inches above the knee and 6 inches below.  Don't forget that the size of your leg is going to change because of all the different things that happen post injury; swelling, atrophy, muscle build up etc.  Are you going to be ordered a new brace or make adjustments to the one you have?

 

The highlighted part sounds no different than comments about buying ski boots online.  You have to know what you are doing and what you are ordering or you'll end up with something that doesn't fit.

 

I don't think people should just go order them online without knowing what they are doing.  They should go through a fitter.  Though I made a comment about then coming in small medium and large, I didn't mean there are only three sizes; there are seven.  My point was that legs aren't that different and the adjustments on the braces can handle most of the variances.

 

You should go to a fitter that specializes in this.  If anyone in this area wants a recommendation, I know a great one.

 

I would bet that once you do the custom order for a Donjoy, someone looks at the numbers, matches them up to one of seven sizes.

 

peace,

 

Ken

 

 

post #26 of 356


that was my major concern.

 

I agree on most other comments. The defiance is rigid and cannot be bent (or isn't intended to be) the straps doa llow adjustment and following surgery I was in the Bregg's full length brace for 3 weeks, then allowed to move to the Donjoy Defiance. The gap between the knee joint cannot be adjusted. I think I can put a narrower pad in on the two contact points but the brace itself is fixed. I think we are on the same page. I can say the fitter took several measurement points, not just 6" above and below. I am with you though. 

Quote:
Originally Posted by L&AirC View Post



Not meaning to quibble and maybe were are talking past each other.  I agree it has to fit perfectly but the fitter (not sure what their title is but he's been doing this and making prosthetics for over 30 years and is Board Certified in this field) told me that the owners of BREG (that started DONJOY) created a database with tens of thousands of leg measurements and men's leg measurements aren't that different.  He also stated that most of the adjustment comes from the straps but it is easy to bend the metal for comfort.  He did make a metal bending adjustment for me because it was pressing on my shin.  I also have a life time of free adjustments from him.

 

Why is it so hard to accept that men's legs and specifically the center of the leg aren't so vastly different that everything has to be custom made yet you can buy shoes or ski boots that come in standard sizes and then fine tune them.

 

Both Donjoy and Breg take the same measurements (according to their sites); 6 inches above the knee and 6 inches below.  Don't forget that the size of your leg is going to change because of all the different things that happen post injury; swelling, atrophy, muscle build up etc.  Are you going to be ordered a new brace or make adjustments to the one you have?

 

The highlighted part sounds no different than comments about buying ski boots online.  You have to know what you are doing and what you are ordering or you'll end up with something that doesn't fit.

 

I don't think people should just go order them online without knowing what they are doing.  They should go through a fitter.  Though I made a comment about then coming in small medium and large, I didn't mean there are only three sizes; there are seven.  My point was that legs aren't that different and the adjustments on the braces can handle most of the variances.

 

You should go to a fitter that specializes in this.  If anyone in this area wants a recommendation, I know a great one.

 

I would bet that once you do the custom order for a Donjoy, someone looks at the numbers, matches them up to one of seven sizes.

 

peace,

 

Ken

 

 



 

post #27 of 356
Quote:
Originally Posted by Finndog View Post


The gap between the knee joint cannot be adjusted. I think I can put a narrower pad in on the two contact points but the brace itself is fixed.



 



On the Breg Fusion this articulates to stay in contact with your knee as you bend it.  I had an Axiom brace previously and it left a gap when I flexed my knee.

 

post #28 of 356

I injured by knee on February 18, 2012, I completely tore the ACL and the tibia has internal fractures and many micro fractures close to the knee. The Dr. does not want to work on the ACL until the bone has healed so my recuperation will be prolonged for a while.

 

In an attempt to anylize the incident I wonder how much my choice of boot could have affected the outcome. I have two pairs of Nordicas, one pair is a size 28.5 with an adjustable stiffness of 70 to 90. The other pair is a size 27.5 with an adjustable stiffness of 110 to 120. I was using the softer boots at the softer setting, mostly because they let me stand upright when I am at rest. The stiffer boot has an increased ramp angle and tend to tire me out more. Walking in them is also more difficult because the size makes for a tighter fit, it's OK for skiing but walking tends to duff my big toe into the shell of the boot, the last is also somewhat thinner.

 

What I'm getting at is could the reduced precision from the softer boot have attributed to the incident that led to the injury?

 

All I really did was catch an edge at speed. It happened very quickly, I don't recall having gotten rearward although it may be that the ski was pulled to the side and forward by the caught edge which would cause the same result. Catching an edge is nothing unusual but this time the outcome was different. I have caught edges using the stiffer boot too so that may not have had anything to do with it but I do see some logic in the idea that sloppier control could constribute to causing a fall, especially if the skiing style (speed, agressiveness, etc.) exceeds the intended design of the equipment.

 

Steve

post #29 of 356

I'd actually like to know the answer to this one too...  I have a weird right foot (huge bump at the top of the foot, soccer...), and ski w/ the two middle buckles untied.  I occasionally wonder if I could get injured easier this way.  I realize that I should probably get a right boot (or perhaps the current one fitted better), but i guess between spending on that and skiing i chose to ski.
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Procreator View Post

I injured by knee on February 18, 2012, I completely tore the ACL and the tibia has internal fractures and many micro fractures close to the knee. The Dr. does not want to work on the ACL until the bone has healed so my recuperation will be prolonged for a while.

 

In an attempt to anylize the incident I wonder how much my choice of boot could have affected the outcome. I have two pairs of Nordicas, one pair is a size 28.5 with an adjustable stiffness of 70 to 90. The other pair is a size 27.5 with an adjustable stiffness of 110 to 120. I was using the softer boots at the softer setting, mostly because they let me stand upright when I am at rest. The stiffer boot has an increased ramp angle and tend to tire me out more. Walking in them is also more difficult because the size makes for a tighter fit, it's OK for skiing but walking tends to duff my big toe into the shell of the boot, the last is also somewhat thinner.

 

What I'm getting at is could the reduced precision from the softer boot have attributed to the incident that led to the injury?

 

All I really did was catch an edge at speed. It happened very quickly, I don't recall having gotten rearward although it may be that the ski was pulled to the side and forward by the caught edge which would cause the same result. Catching an edge is nothing unusual but this time the outcome was different. I have caught edges using the stiffer boot too so that may not have had anything to do with it but I do see some logic in the idea that sloppier control could constribute to causing a fall, especially if the skiing style (speed, agressiveness, etc.) exceeds the intended design of the equipment.

 

Steve



 

post #30 of 356

Steve,

When I tore my left acl in 2008, it was surmised that one of the contributing factors was my boots were too big (27.5) which enables skiers to get in the back seat.  I don't think ill fitting boots can will cause it (if 90% of skiers are in boots too big, shouldn't 90% of the skiers have torn acl's?) but I do think they can set you up to fall and you can tear the acl in a fall no matter how your boots fit.  When I tore my other acl in 2011, I was wearing very snug boots (25.5) with heat molded liners and a custom foot bed.  There is NO extra room!  My foot measures 26.4.

 

The first injury I was in boots too big on terrain to steep with a skill set that didn't warrant being where I was.  The perfect storm for an injury.  The second time was a tactical error while racing.  After the first injury I started taking lessons and eventually became an instructor.  I had been training every weekend for two seasons when I was hurt the second time.  It had nothing to do with boot fit or ability (turned to early and ski went between the gate poles).

 

Loss of precision can effect the intended outcome not matter what you're doing.  If you've ever done any drills like skiing with your boots unbuckled, you know it can be done but takes better balance.  I (by mistake) raced a nastar course with my boots unbuckled.  I did it but had a couple close calls.  At first I thought my skis were messed up until I realized my boots weren't buckled.  Unbuckled boots aren't precise at all.  Racing like that felt very sluggish.

 

There's probably too many variables to name to find a smoking gun on your injury, but poor fitting boots won't help.

 

I'm curious why you think catching an edge isn't unusual.

 

Ken

 

 

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