Friday, May 15, 2009

A Reconstructed ACL Two Years Later

It is May 15th and my reconstructed ACL turns two today! My knee is healthy and strong despite the noisy creaks and groans.

ACL Recovery Accomplishments:

  1. Full range of motion
  2. Recovered leg strength
  3. Returned to Karate as a student and instructor
  4. Joined a gym
  5. Learned to play racquetball
  6. Tai Chi classes
  7. Can kneel in seiza...for a short time :)
  8. Got my cat stance back
  9. Improved balance
  10. Started a blog

When I started this blog I was searching for answers. I was looking for other martial artist that experienced an ACL reconstruction. I wanted to know what happens after surgery. I am not referring to the first few months. I wanted to hear what a reconstructed knee was like at one, two or five years. Information was hard to find. There were many stories that went into great detail about the surgery itself or the first few days of recovery. I wanted to read the success stories from people of all ages, graft types and activity level.

It is my hope that people with ACL injuries find this blog. I want them to know that even though the road may be difficult and frustrating at times.

There are success stories.

To the readers and those who have left comments on this blog...thank you for you support and encouragement. To the people who have a torn ACL or are in the process rehabilitation....good luck and best wishes for a speedy recovery!


Cameron Spearman said...

I'm glad to see you have come back from reconstructive surgery!

My instructor's had both of his knees worked on and is basically a walking miracle since he's probably better than he was before the ACL's went kaput, so while I've never been through it myself, I've seen living proof that it can definitely be done.

Keep at it!

Katie said...

I just came across your blog! I get my ACL surgery on Weds. and am blogging about it, too!
Keep the success stories coming! Always good to know there is hope.

Michele said...

Mr. White Tiger: Thanks! I am glad to hear that your instructor's knees are better than they were before the surgery. Another success story!

Katie: Thanks for visiting my blog and for your comments. Good luck with your surgery on Wednesday. I read your blog posts and with your positive attitude...I am sure you will do great!

Anonymous said...

Mr. White Tiger,

I had surgery (cadaver) in early February. I have graduated from PT and am continuing to do the exercises at home. Six weeks or so ago I resumed playing golf and starting pushing a cart again lately. I am 52 yrs old and continue to be in pain. When I told my Doc. he seemed surprised and said it is maybe scar tissue. Besides the pain my knee feels stiff, tired and most times like a rock. Getting up from my desk at work or driving for 45 mins. makes getting up painful. Is this normal? Will it get better. What was your experience like after 4 months?


Michele said...

Hi Don,

Sorry to hear that your knee is causing you pain. I was lucky because I did not have much pain with my surgery or recovery. At four months, my knee would be tired but not painful after a long day. I still had restrictions in regard to karate (kicking, pivoting etc). Do you have full ROM? Extention?

If your knee is causing you pain, you should touch base again with your surgeon and PT.

The bright side is that it does get better. Good luck!

Anonymous said...


What graft choice did you have? (i.e. Patellar, hamstring, or cadaver). Also how long can you kneel in seiza and what prevents you from kneeling longer?

Just wondering because I have an upcoming ACL reconstruction in two weeks. I am debating between the graft choices and am also into karate and brazillian jiu (where we kneel in seiza frequently).

Michele said...

Anon: Best of luck in your upcoming ACL surgery.

I had a hamstring graft. I am not sure how long I can kneel...

Kneeling still feels uncomfortable for me at times. Someone once suggested that I stretch more and practice the kneeling position.

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