Knee recovery

It was 4 December 2009 when I ruptured my knee tendon in the right knee by a mountainbiking accident. Indirectly, this was caused by an earlier fall on 27 September 2009, which also landed me in hospital. i was enjoying myself when it happened: it was 5 degrees Celsius, with rain and mud. I was cycling about 15km/h when my rear wheel slipped and I fell. Only, I was trying not to fall by compensating with my knee. In fact, it turns out that if you do that with your knee bent and exert a lot of force, it is possible to rupture your knee tendon.

So there I was lying on the ground with my knee cap about 10cm above the place where it usually was. I could straighten my leg using my arms but walking was impossible. I tried it and fell again. So I called the emergency number telling them exactly where I was using GPS coordinates. Still, they had a lot of trouble finding me. Luckily, after about 30 minutes (it was already getting dark), I saw a woman who was letting out her dog. Turns out that they lived quite close by; about 300 metres.

With the help of the woman’s husband I finallly managed to get out of the forest and the ambulance so pick me up at their home. To make a long story short, I was operated the next day, followed by a cast for 7 weeks. When the cast came off on 22nd January, I could start to exercise the knee again. In the beginning it would only bend very little but with a lot of exercise I quickly reached 90 degrees of bend.

knee bend

A few weeks after that I could start cycling again on a home trainer with reduced crank size. And after that doing more and more strenght exercises.

Currently, I am already commuting to work again by bike and it is not a problem to cycle 70km a day on the recumbent bike. Unfortunately, still not able to go mountainbiking. In some areas I am still missing some strenght (in particular going down the stairs). The strenght is coming back but it is going slowly. I have set a criterion for myself which is to be able to run at least for 30 minutes without problems while running and afterwards. Not quite there yet. I can run for 14 minutes on a tred mill. So, recovery is going well but is slow. I still see changes on a weekly basis. If all goes well I will be able to go mountainbiking again in a couple of months (after summer).