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Recovering from ACL reconstructive surgery

Schussygirl

Diva in Training
#1
Hi Skidivas,

I'm so happy I've found this site!! I'm 51 and have been skiing for 11 years. I fell on the slopes Dec 26th and completely tore my ACL. I had surgery on Jan 16 to reconstruct my ACL using a cadaver donor's Achilles' tendon. This is my first knee injury ever. My husband and I are taking our three teenagers to Heavenly (Tahoe) to ski spring break (first week in April - 11 and 1/2 weeks post op). Has anyone tried to ski again that soon? I would be happy just doing a few green runs with a brace of course. I don't think my doctor would approve, but it's so hard and depressing to think my season is over. Thanks ladies!!
 

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Skier31

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#2
Sorry to hear about your injury. I have not heard of anyone skiing that soon after surgery (not even sure Lindsey Vonn or other pro skiers). Plus, it is April and with freeze/thaw cycles, may be challenging conditions. Set your sights on next year!

I did not ski for a full year after my surgery and felt great when I did.
 

DvR

Certified Ski Diva
#3
I can’t agree more with Skier31. I dislocated my shoulder January of 2019, did not require surgery but had a year of physical therapy and working with a trainer to build up strength before I started skiing again this January. This season is all about building confidence and taking lessons. Worth every missed day of skiing last year.
 
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#4
I had full acl reconstruction in Sept of '17, using hamstring. The best advice I was given was to do rehab exactly the way prescribed. Do not take shortcuts. Do not get lazy. And most importantly, do not do activities until your surgeon releases you. The #1 thing I heard from other ACL patients was "I tried to do X early and my knee has never been the same". I know. It sucks. I *could* have skied late, late spring ( in perfect conditions, on greens) but I thought why risk it? I am way too active to want to permanently f* up my knee. Instead, focus on rehab and getting really, really strong. Look for a PT facility that does "return to sport" PT, not "return to cubicle". I can't understate the importance of this. One of my best friends couldn't hold him self back from getting back on his mountain bike much earlier than recommended and boy, he is paying the price now.

I can't recall if I posted a thread on my rehab. It's fully documented on my Instagram, @geargrrl, starting July 1, 2017

No pity parties allowed. People get hurt, they get through it. Let your support system help you. Find something else to occupy your time: take up knitting, genealogy, reading the classics. Meditate. My hub, who has sustained numerous injuries over the years (dislocated shoulder, separated shoulder, knee surgery, shoulder reconstruction, broken pelvis/collarbone in one fell swoop that required two collarbone surgeries, broken wrist, broken hand and currently a broken leg) allowed me about 10 minutes of crying about it.

Good luck. Ask around for the best PT in your community.
 
#5
I had full acl reconstruction in Sept of '17, using hamstring. The best advice I was given was to do rehab exactly the way prescribed. Do not take shortcuts. Do not get lazy. And most importantly, do not do activities until your surgeon releases you. The #1 thing I heard from other ACL patients was "I tried to do X early and my knee has never been the same". I know. It sucks. I *could* have skied late, late spring ( in perfect conditions, on greens) but I thought why risk it? I am way too active to want to permanently f* up my knee. Instead, focus on rehab and getting really, really strong. Look for a PT facility that does "return to sport" PT, not "return to cubicle". I can't understate the importance of this. One of my best friends couldn't hold him self back from getting back on his mountain bike much earlier than recommended and boy, he is paying the price now.

I can't recall if I posted a thread on my rehab. It's fully documented on my Instagram, @geargrrl, starting July 1, 2017

No pity parties allowed. People get hurt, they get through it. Let your support system help you. Find something else to occupy your time: take up knitting, genealogy, reading the classics. Meditate. My hub, who has sustained numerous injuries over the years (dislocated shoulder, separated shoulder, knee surgery, shoulder reconstruction, broken pelvis/collarbone in one fell swoop that required two collarbone surgeries, broken wrist, broken hand and currently a broken leg) allowed me about 10 minutes of crying about it.

Good luck. Ask around for the best PT in your community.
Oh - I worked so hard on my rehad I did not need a brace.

https://www.theskidiva.com/forums/i...r-acl-mcl-meniscus-surgery.23936/#post-389547

https://www.theskidiva.com/forums/i...-one-year-post-acl-surgery.23045/#post-370937

https://www.theskidiva.com/forums/index.php?threads/back-on-the-snow.23318/
 

Schussygirl

Diva in Training
#6
Sorry to hear about your injury. I have not heard of anyone skiing that soon after surgery (not even sure Lindsey Vonn or other pro skiers). Plus, it is April and with freeze/thaw cycles, may be challenging conditions. Set your sights on next year!

I did not ski for a full year after my surgery and felt great when I did.
Thank you for your honest reply! My logical brain agrees with you. It's just so disappointing. Sounds like you know exactly how I feel. I appreciate your reply. Happy skiing!!
 
#7
It's probably true for any surgery, but ACL - there are so many ways to mess it up!

Anyhow: Thanks for joining! We are so glad to have you here. You'll find we are incredible enablers, for buying new skis, boots, or fashion, but not for cutting your rehab short!

:injured: :welcome: :injured:
 
#8
I had left ACL reconstruction back in the 90’s and it was a year before I skied again. Don’t rush it. Funny thing is, my lower left leg muscles are just as strong as the right but they never got back to the same size as before the surgery.
 

Skier31

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#9
Thank you for your honest reply! My logical brain agrees with you. It's just so disappointing. Sounds like you know exactly how I feel. I appreciate your reply. Happy skiing!!
Treat yourself to massage or spa while others are skiing. It is not easy to be around skiing when you can’t but you can do it. The long term health of your knee is worth it!
 

BlueSkies

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#11
Sorry to hear about it. I had the ACL repair with a cadaver achilles tendon in 2012. It was about 11 months from the surgery date before I was back on skis (and it took a while after to get back up to speed). Take your time, do the PT and treat yourself to other pleasures while your family skis.
 

JaneB

PSIA 1 Instructor, Killington
#13
I had a complication from the first surgery, had to have a second surgery 9 months later, and wasn’t back on skis for three years.
ACL replacement is a major surgery. Soft tissues take a long time to heal. Hang in there.
 

Peaheartsmama

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#14
I’ve had ACL surgery on both knees successive years. Each time i did almost 9 months of PT before getting back on skis. I don’t even think they issued/ cleared me for a brace till about 4-5 months after the the surgery. Definitely give yourself time to heal. So much out of control on the hill, you don’t want to risk hurting it again while it heals. Definitely follow your PT plan and start ASAP. I think I was in PT three days after surgery. I ski with both braces now and so far everything is ok. (Knock on wood!) good luck on your recovery!
 

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