I am older skier, started learning to ski at age 40, I was in the middle of what would have been my fourth season last year when I sustained a knee injury, completely severing my ACL, tearing my meniscus, and spraining my MCL.
I had surgery, the surgery went well, I did all the things recommended by the surgeon post-surgery and then started doing PT which I did aggressively from May of last year until I cleared by the PT to go back to the gym last fall. I continue to work out doing a routine based on my PT three times a week with some cardio mixed in on the off days. The PT routine is a mix of agility, jumping, and classic strength training.
Prior to my injury I was definitely progressing in my skiing, capable of accessing the vast majority of terrain (black and double-black) at my home resort which is one of the bigger resorts on the East coast. I could ski decently in the all conditions the East coast can throw at a skier.
Flash forward to now, I am nine days into my current season and frankly I am "sucking hard" would be the best way I can put it.
I tire easily, the injured leg gets very tender and painful after only three days of skiing. I ski like a beginner, I am spending most of my time in the beginners area, rather than getting out on the rest of the mountain. When I do venture out into the larger resort my skiing is sloppy and unpredictable. Basically, I ski terribly - to the point where I am considering hanging up my skis.
So my question: is this the normal experience returning to skiing after ACL surgery? What have other folks experienced? Did you hop right back on the slopes at the same pre-injury level of ability after a few weeks of the season or does it take many seasons to get it back?