ACL tear and surgery

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bumps bumps
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Re: ACL tear and surgery

Dumb question: are ACL tears an issue mainly for alpine skiers? Does the tele free heel minimize or eliminate the chance of this injury?
campgottagopee campgottagopee
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Re: ACL tear and surgery

Yes, those sissy tele dudes rarely tear their ACL
Brownski Brownski
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Re: ACL tear and surgery

I remember reading many years ago that the rate of ACL injuries among skiers skyrocketed when the industry moved from straight to shapes skis. The same sidecut that made the ski so easy to turn increased the incidence of "phantom foot" injuries, where one ski tracks away from the skier's direction of motion, torquing the knee. It's the downside of having skis that are capable of literally turning themselves. Does that comport with you guys' experiences? I've had this "phantom foot" theory in the back of my head for probably 15 years, especially when I'm skiing crud or mank, but I don't know if my understanding of it was ever correct.
"You want your skis? Go get 'em!" -W. Miller
Ethan Snow Ethan Snow
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Re: ACL tear and surgery

I'm young, but I've yet to have a major injury related to skiing. The worst skiing related injury I've had was when I threw a 360 and landed way too tail heavy, and because bindings don't pop pout through the toe, it put a ton of strain on my leg, and messed something up. Nothing was broken.

My first set of skis was a pair of old K2 straight skis. All I can say is I did a lot more side slipping on those then I did with my shaped skis. Shaped skis make it much easier to hold an edge. I've had a bunch of different skis over the years, but now I'm using a pair of 184 long Fischer Watteas with a 126-84-112 sidecut.  I love them because that is a very wide turning radius considering the length. Compared to a lot of shaped skis I see nowadays, these appear relatively straight. Not only do they allow you to go fast but when you turn them on edge, they don't whip you around super quick. They take their time to turn which is nice, because it won't catch you off guard.
At just about any point in my life, I can look back on where I was a year ago, and say to myself, "Shit, what was I thinking?"
marznc marznc
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Re: ACL tear and surgery

In reply to this post by Brownski
Brownski wrote
I remember reading many years ago that the rate of ACL injuries among skiers skyrocketed when the industry moved from straight to shapes skis. The same sidecut that made the ski so easy to turn increased the incidence of "phantom foot" injuries, where one ski tracks away from the skier's direction of motion, torquing the knee. It's the downside of having skis that are capable of literally turning themselves. Does that comport with you guys' experiences? I've had this "phantom foot" theory in the back of my head for probably 15 years, especially when I'm skiing crud or mank, but I don't know if my understanding of it was ever correct.
Don't know about the stats comparing before/after ski design changed but here is recommendations for avoiding ACL injuries due to "phantom foot."

https://vermontskisafety.com/research/tips/

"One common ACL injury scenario has been termed the Phantom Foot because it involves the tail of the ski, a lever which points in a direction opposite that of the human foot. Phantom Foot injuries can occur when the tail of the downhill ski, in combination with the stiff back of the ski boot, acts as a lever to apply a unique combination of twisting and bending loads to the knee."

The other common type of action that leads to ACL injury is called "boot induced."

"The knee injury scenario that is probably the simplest to avoid altogether has been termed the Boot Induced ACL. The injury is sustained during hard landings by off-balance skiers. Typically, the skier begins a jump off-balance to the rear, and rotates the downhill arm up and rearward in an attempt to regain balance before landing. This motion is instinctively coordinated with the extension of the skier’s uphill leg."
Fluid164 Fluid164
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Re: ACL tear and surgery

In reply to this post by BigK75


Get the surgery .... give yourself a minimum of 8 months of intense PT/rehab. I had a great surgeon, but, it's really the PT who saved my life. The surgery is commonplace. A good physical therapist will become a lifelong friend. I was going 3-4 days a week initially. You get out what you put in.  Go back too early and your chance of reinjury is very high.

I had mine done when I was 50. I'm 53 now, play pick up basketball 2-3 times a week, ski and sail .... get it done right and do the PT.
Brownski Brownski
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Re: ACL tear and surgery

In reply to this post by marznc
I feel somewhat vindicated by the article you found Marz, though I don't think I explained that well. It seems like balance is always the answer in skiing. I believe Z has made the same case here (regarding balance being the key to adults improving and avoiding injury I mean) in the past. I find everybody's take on treatment and recovery to be useful and informative but I think I'd like to see some purposeful thread drift here as well- to cover how the injuries occurred and how they ski differently post-injury to avoid additional damage
"You want your skis? Go get 'em!" -W. Miller
marznc marznc
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Re: ACL tear and surgery

Brownski wrote
I feel somewhat vindicated by the article you found Marz, though I don't think I explained that well. It seems like balance is always the answer in skiing. I believe Z has made the same case here (regarding balance being the key to adults improving and avoiding injury I mean) in the past. I find everybody's take on treatment and recovery to be useful and informative but I think I'd like to see some purposeful thread drift here as well- to cover how the injuries occurred and how they ski differently post-injury to avoid additional damage
My approach was very simple to avoid any knee injuries while skiing: 1) get into better shape, 2) improve technique by investing in high level lessons and spending time practicing to ingrain new habits.  Note that I'm somewhat adventurous when skiing with ski buddies but not that aggressive.  Meaning I'm not interested in high speed zipper line bump skiing or narrow chutes.  Powder in an open bowl or in trees was more my idea of ideal conditions when I started taking lessons.  Thinking that bumps are fun was an unexpected side effect of becoming a better skier.

After popping off an ACL (not skiing) and completing PT (Weeks 3-10 after injury) I started doing year round ski conditioning that included weekly sessions with a personal trainer.  I work with my trainer for a few months after the ski season is over (late April thru June or July) and during pre-season (Sept thru mid-Dec).  I work out on my own at home or at the local fitness center but rarely more than 3 times a week.

What I mean by "high level lessons" is lessons with PSIA L3 instructors or L2 with 10+ years of experience.  I was over 50 and a low advanced skier when I started upping my game.  Had I known what I learned after the first two seasons of lessons, I would've invested in my own skiing when it was clear my daughter was hooked.

I convinced my main ski buddy to join me for semi-private lessons at destination resorts.  He hadn't had a lesson since he was an advanced skier skiing bumps on Bell Mountain at Aspen in high school.  Took a few seasons, but since he has a wonky knee (messed up meniscus in high school) I guess he thought it was worth seeing what could change.  He skis smoother and more hours during a ski day at age 65 than he did at 60, and he was quite a good skier when I started skiing with him at North Country School alumni gatherings at Alta Lodge ten years ago.  He grew up in NYC skiing in the northeast with family before going to NCS in the 1960s.  I learned to ski at NCS and skied very little after that.  NCS students ski at Whiteface, as well as the school's hill (rope tow).  He did a Taos Ski Week last season and will do another this season.  I don't think he would be skiing Taos double-blacks quite as much without the lessons we did together.  I think it's ironic that my favorite instructor at Alta is from North Carolina.  He lives about 30 min from me during the off-season.  Recommendation came from my boot fitter who owns a NC ski shop.

End result of what I did the 2-3 years after knee rehab is that I was skiing faster on groomers and exploring more complex terrain than before losing the ACL.  Quite a silver lining in my case.
Peter Minde Peter Minde
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Re: ACL tear and surgery

In reply to this post by BigK75
I've had my share of orthopedic issues, but no ACL tears.  All I can say is, don't be afraid to get a second opinion before choosing a surgeon.  If you haven't already done so, try to read up on the options.  Two different surgeons looked at the same MRI of my knee and recommended drastically different procedures.

Best wishes for a complete recovery.
campgottagopee campgottagopee
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Re: ACL tear and surgery

In reply to this post by Brownski
My injury was due to a binding pre release that occurred while truckin along at a good clip. Ski boot hit the snow, and, well, resulted in a effed up knee.

As for skiing after my injury it seems like it's always in the back of my head me knee could buckle at any given time. Even tho it's braced up, that doubt is still in there. Because of the, shall I say, not so perfect conditions we have here in CNY, unless it's "soft day" it's not even worth the pain to go out and ski.

Thus the new sled
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