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Attitude [fear] after total knee replacement [tkr] surgeries ...?

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

I admit to more than a little trepedation at returning to the slopes ...

Had both knees done in Feb. & May of 2012, with ortho-surgeon admonishments to -- 'conversational skiing, no moguls & don't fall'

When pressed on the 'don't fall' -- it was '...we don't want to go there'!

Then, watched Warren Miller's Flow in Nov-2012 --

And, then hip-work [hamstring]  in Jan-2013 --

 

The thoughts were ... You're 60+, you've got Alpine-L1, you want [need] L2 -- Get the knees done to eliminate any excuses for L2

Now, there's 'fear' about the fall ... Have not been on snow since surgeries -- Not a big loss, given the weather conditions.

 

Part-time instructor at WaWa in Princeton/ MA ...

 

Any comments/thoughts from those with similar surgical experiences ...?

post #2 of 6
Last time on the mountain, I rode a lift with an instructor who'd also learned late (she was 38; I was 46). She said giving up fear was the thing. And she's right. If you don't fear, you're ok. (Unless you're oblivious.)
post #3 of 6

Hi, Mark.

 

The fear is certainly understandable.  Double knees is quite a commitment.

 

If it's any help at all, I have a friend here in Jackson Hole who had both knees done in November of 2011.  He was not a great skier prior to the surgery but really wants to improve because all of his friends ski fairly hard.  I and a couple of others have sort of taken him on as a "project" this season to see if we can improve his skiing.

 

He's a few years older than you and I'm sure doesn't have the skiing background you do.

 

So here's the bottom line...

 

He has improved a great deal this winter.  He's now skiing pretty steep, junky snow in out-of-bounds terrain.  Speed control sometimes is an issue for him and along the way, I've personally watched him endure 3 or 4 really hideous-looking falls.  He's popped right up from every one of them and is still skiing and having fun.  I don't know if his doc told him not to fall, but he's obviously not taking that advice.

 

I know of another JH skier, about your age, who had double knee replacement four years ago.  He guides helicopter skiing here.

 

You'll have to decide for yourself, of course, but my anecdotal experience is that those knees are tougher than we might think.

 

I sure hope so, because I'm headed for one myself in the next couple of years.

 

Good luck!

post #4 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by lakespapa View Post

Last time on the mountain, I rode a lift with an instructor who'd also learned late (she was 38; I was 46). She said giving up fear was the thing. And she's right. If you don't fear, you're ok. (Unless you're oblivious.)

 

Not to suggest my own personal fearlessness, oh no.  Just that, plunging down a mortal slope through heavy, plowed up mounds of snow, I found that in those moments when I forgot to be afraid, I skied so much better.  I knew I wouldn't fall (though I might, of course), and the skiing was effortless.  When I remembered my normal, guardedly-terrified state of mind, there I was, back-pedaling, resisting the hill, muscling transitions, wearing out the quads, falling all over myself.  

post #5 of 6

I think it's natural to be apprehensive coming back from any leg injury.

 

My sister had TKR on both knees at once when she was about 40. She had it due to RA. She's gone skiing a few times. I don't think her doctor thought it was a big deal for her to go.

 

Hope you get a chance to go before the season ends.

 

If you don't do it this year, you'll just be one year older when you try next year.

post #6 of 6

I know several ski patrollers and instructors that have had double TKR that still ski well.  I had a THR 2/11/13 and am considering skiing closing day groomers.

My doctor in Illinois would tell me I'm insane.  The docs I know in Aspen aren't quite as conservative, because they see people do it all the time.

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