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Surfsister's surfing TKR

Discussion in 'Stories of amazing knee recoveries' started by Surfsister, Sep 3, 2010.

  1. Surfsister

    Surfsister Senior

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    Re: Sport in the TKR afterlife

    [​IMG]

    My TKR and I have been doing this since three and a half months after my surgery. These knees can withstand almost anything once you strengthen your muscles and your resolve.

    [​IMG]
    (Note: both photos were taken after my TKR!)
  2. Surfsister

    Surfsister Senior

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    Re: Sport in the TKR afterlife

    I paddle out on my belly. I've had limited motion in my TKR knee since the massive knee injury, at 17, that led to my TKR almost 30 years later. When I pop-up, I go from my belly to standing. I've worked hard to develop the upper body strength to needed to surf without struggling. When I was recovering from my TKR surgery, I stayed in the pool (with a pull buoy) as a way to maintain my fitness and strength. I also lifted weights on my upper body only until I could start using my lower body again.

    Prior to the TKR, I hadn't run in about seven years. Since the surgery, I've done a few runs in the soft sand at the beach. They were runs of about 30 minutes. I would prefer not to run on hard pavement. There are people out there who do run seriously with knee replacements. I've also done a little running with the dog (on pavement). Running makes the knee a bit uncomfortable later in the day, but it's nothing serious. Cycling, which I used to do competitively, does the same thing.

    Seriously, the knee does not hold me back. If I want to do something, I do it. There is a tall hill in my neighborhood that the city put stairs up. It's a great workout, but it is nasty. Some of the stairs are just too steep for me and my short legs. Nevertheless, there are days when I walk up those stairs going up that hill and then run back down on the hiking trails. That is a tough workout. My knee handles it well. I only do this workout every once in awhile because, frankly, it's boring. I'd do it more often if I didn't have surfing.[​IMG]

    The reason I posted this picture is to show my limitations. I cannot get much lower, when crouching, than I am in this shot because my knee won't allow me to. I just don't have the range of motion for it. So while this was a tiny little barrel I could have potentially tucked into with complete range of motion, all I could do was look at it. Nevertheless, it's rare that I need to bend myself into a tight little ball when I'm surfing and I just work around my limitations. My knee does not hold me back.
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  3. Surfsister

    Surfsister Senior

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    Re: Sport in the TKR afterlife

    I am on a mission, both on BoneSmart and through my surf blog, to show other athletes and athletic people that a knee replacement is not the end of the world. While a prosthetic knee is not as good as a human knee, it's a hell of a lot better than a human knee riddled with osteoarthritis. Without the surgery, I wouldn't be surfing. I wouldn't be doing much of anything, would I? I'd be in a lot of pain, unable to do much more than . . . hurt. That's not a life I want to live. So, I had my TKR a month after the orthopedist told me the knee was done. I was scared, yes. Still, I was more afraid of losing my identity and the things that gave me, and continue to give me, joy. All I wanted was to surf again. I didn't want spectacular ROM. I didn't want a beautiful scar. None of that was important. I just wanted to keep living the life I love.

    And now, more than a year later, I hardly notice that I have a titanium joint. I'm finally to the point where I don't think about it much anymore. You will get to that point too. In the meantime, go outside and play!! I do.
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  4. Surfsister

    Surfsister Senior

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    I'm closing in on my two year anniversary of my knee replacement. Last week, I surfed or rode my surf mat (which requires some serious leg strength as I wear fins and kick like my life depends on it) for five straight days at a spot that requires you hike down and hike back up.

    I got a new skateboard as one of my Christmas presents. There's also a mini ramp for skateboarding in my backyard . . . which my child doesn't go near so you can guess who uses it.

    With a degenerating knee, you have nowhere to go but down. With a replaced knee, you have nowhere to go but up.

    I lost my surfboard into the rocks a few days ago. I had to do a 15 minute painful walk across the rocks to get back to the trail to get back to the car. It was not an easy walk. My knee was fine. I mean, it was perfect. My bare feet? Not so much.

    My knee doesn't get in the way. I have limited range of motion, but I had that before surgery. I do get a twinge of pain here and there. That's to be expected since I use the knee to its full capacities.

    I know of other surfers, whom I met through the internet, with replaced knees. None of us has been held back.

    Embrace your bionic future.
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