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  1. #1
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    Bonking ... not feelin' well Achilles Tendon Rupture

    I had a complete achilles tendon rupture (non cycling related) about 2 1/2 weeks ago, with surgery 2 weeks ago. I wonder if any of you have had this injury and if you could tell me about your recuperation, how quickly you were back in the saddle and any tips you might have for me. Thanks. This sucks right now.

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    Aaargh!

    Now you've got me spooked. My right achilles tendon aches from time to time and since it is on my good leg, I have often think how terrible it would be to tear it.

    I hope you have a speedy recovery. It sucks being hurt when you are an active person. Keep up your spirits!

  3. #3
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    Thanks for the kind words. Didn't see this injury coming. My only advice is to keep them stretched and avoid quick sprints, if possible, which is how I blew mine out.

  4. #4
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    Rehab Achilles Rupture

    Quote Originally Posted by aussieklein
    I had a complete achilles tendon rupture (non cycling related) about 2 1/2 weeks ago, with surgery 2 weeks ago. I wonder if any of you have had this injury and if you could tell me about your recuperation, how quickly you were back in the saddle and any tips you might have for me. Thanks. This sucks right now.
    I feel for you man. I also suffered a complete achilles tear (racquetball) several years back. It was very inconvenient as the casting period was 3 months. There will be significant atrophy in the entire leg, (but less than when I suffered the injury) because they typically don't use a full length cast anymore for the first month. The calf will atrophy the most. Rehab must be done under the care of a qualified thereapist and will include lots of calf related exercises, stretching the tendon and calf muscles, and electrical stimulation/ultrasound treatments.

    Cycling on a stationary bike will be done almost immediately when the cast comes off but my therapist didn't want me on a road bike until about 6 weeks after the cast came off for fear I might plant my foot awkwardly and reinjure the tendon. I was mountain biking again after about the 8th or 9th month (after suffering the injury). You'll definitely feel pain on early mountain bike rides as the jarring will work muscles and joints that rehab. exercises won't cover. Just use common sense and listen to your body. Full recovery, for me anyway, was after about a year.

    You may recover faster. Pro athletes, following this injury, resume play in their respective sports after about 8 months but of course, they have round the clock treatments that you and I probably don't have access to.

    One good point. After this injury is all said and done, the injured tendon will be superior to the tendon on the other leg as the scar tissue formation actually increases the integrity of the tendon. To quote my physician, "You'll never rip this tendon again."

    Best wishes for a speedy recovery!

  5. #5
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    I completely ruptured mine about 5 years ago. Back then, they would put you in a cast for 90 days. For the first 30 days, the cast went half way up my thigh, and my ankle was cast at a 45 degree angle pointing down. For the second thirty days, it was the same cast, but they chopped it to just below my knee, so crutches were still mandatory due to the angle of my foot. For the last 30 days, they recast my leg from just below my knee, but this time changed the angle of my foot to flat, so I could walk with one of those slippers over the cast. So what I did, was mounted an SPD cleat to the bottom of the slipper(booty), and used to ride around on the road on my mountain bike, to get my quads back in shape. Once the cast was removed, I was back on the bike within 2 weeks. It would have been sooner, but it takes a while to get the range of motion back. Even today I have some real minor arthritis in the ankle first thing in the morning. I understand that now they put you in a soft boot for 6 weeks, but it also seems to take longer to recoup.

    Incidentally, I tore mine playing tennis. I am very diligent about stretching mine on a daily basis now. I had just turned 30 when I tore mine.

  6. #6
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    I'm sorry to hear about your injured Achilles’ tendon.
    I had a complete rupture May 27, 2005 and had surgery to reattach it 10 days later. I was riding a trainer one legged within a month of surgery. Unfortunately for me I developed a slight infection after surgery. It was touch and go as to go back into surgery to deal with the infection. I did not need to go back to surgery but it set the recovery back a month.
    I was in a walking boot for two months before I finally got permission to go to the physical therapist. I was not happy with my original therapist so I stopped going. I got lucky and found someone who knew what I needed as an active person and helped me develop an aggressive therapy program to get me back on the trails and back on the soccer field.
    I went to therapy 2x's per week for one hour per session. I also had home exercises which I did every day. I actually did twice the amount required by my therapist every day. I bought a small ice chest, filled it half way with water and the other half with ice. I would put my foot in as long as possible every night until the ice melted every day for a year. The ice helped recovery which gave me the opportunity to work out every day.
    I was riding my road bike with flat pedals in two months. My right leg had completely atrophied during the first two months. I literally had to learn to walk all over again. It took four months to get the feeling of balance back in the injured leg. I remember the feeling well, it was like wow! I can feel the ground again. Before that it was like carrying a club around.
    After six months of therapy I was discharged and went back to work as a carpenter. I had trouble on roofs but other than that I was ok on the job site. I could run and bike after six months of hard work.
    It takes a lot of time and effort but you can come back from this injury. I look back on where I was and where I am now and it's incredible. I run 9-12 miles per week, mountain bike 3 to 4 times per week, ride rollers with my road bike for an hour at a time when the weather is bad. I have been on 60 + mile road rides since the injury. I have been on 3-4 hour mt bike rides in Skeggs, demo, Wilder, Coe (Calif).
    Advice is to find a good physical therapist, listen to their advice and plenty of ice.
    By the way I just had my 50th birthday last October and bought myself my first full suspension Ellsworth Truth, yeah!
    PM me if you need any advice or have questions.
    Last edited by Dantley; 04-22-2007 at 09:10 AM.
    "Do or do not, there is no try." Yoda

  7. #7
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    Thanks for all your replies. I am glad to hear you are all back in the saddle, although the routes you had to take to get there are quite different. I am supposed to begin PT tomorrow, but I am also scheduled to come to the US on Feb 6. I am an American living in Sydney, where my wife works, but I work in Minneapolis and Cincinnati. I am supposed to be in Cincy for 3 weeks, so I will find a good PT near the office there. I am going stir crazy sitting around here in summer, no less. I know they will have me riding a stationary bike, but with all tha hills here I don't know that I'll be able to ride my road back until 4 months after the surgery, at least that is what the surgeon said. Thanks again for taking the time to let me know how it went for each of you. I'll keep you informed from this end. If anyone wants to come to Sydney with their bike in 6 months or so, let me know!

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    Hope you get back into things soon! The worst part of recovery is not being able to do the things you enjoy...

    I have a question about this achilles tendon rupture. Did any of you that had this happen have any warning, or was it just a freak fall or sudden move that ripped it? Mine's been a little sore for a while and I'm thinking maybe I should see a doc.

    Az

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    Quote Originally Posted by Az Barber
    Hope you get back into things soon! The worst part of recovery is not being able to do the things you enjoy...

    I have a question about this achilles tendon rupture. Did any of you that had this happen have any warning, or was it just a freak fall or sudden move that ripped it? Mine's been a little sore for a while and I'm thinking maybe I should see a doc.

    Az
    Thanks Az. Mine happened suddenly when I took off on a sprint in bare feet. I had been riding 60 kms a day when in Australia with no problems. The only thing I can think of that may have been a warning is I was a little flatfooted in the morning when I first got up. I'd go see a good orthopod as you want to avoid what the rest of us have gone through, if possible. Good luck!

  10. #10
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    I had plenty of warning that I chose to ignore. I had sore achilles for a couple years from playing soccer. I would go easy on the soccer and the soreness would go away.
    When it actually ruptured it was a surprise but looking back it shouldn't have been.

  11. #11
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    Achilles Tendon Rupture

    Oh man ! Mine ruptured in sept. but didnt have surgery til mid nov. 8 weeks in a cast. 4 weeks in a boot. I start pt next week . Can't wait to get on the mtb. Doc told me could be along time depending on how PT goes, I'M a old dude 42, and waited too long for surgery.Keep us posted on your progress.

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    Why such a long time between the injury and surgery BIG JOHN?

  13. #13
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    Achilles Tendon Rupture

    First week or so hoping it would get better. Then when i decided i had better get it looked at, had issues with insurance. my company has really poor insurance! VERY EXPENSIVE operation.soooooooooo happy to be off the crutches!! I was told to listen to the doc to prevent re-injuring it,so i am all ears .but cant wait to start the pt,and riding again.

  14. #14
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    Ouch! Sorry to hear that John. Insurance is great, until you need it! I am curious how much your surgery cost. The reason I ask is I'm a US citizen living in Australia for the last 3 years. Everyone who is a citizen or permanent resident of Australia has their health care provided by the government. I am a temporary resident, so I'm not covered, but do have insurance through my wife's company. There are both public and private hospitals here as people can get health insurance on top of the care provided by the government. Anyway, I had my surgery done at a private hospital, which is not supported by the government in any way. The cost was as follows: surgeon-$A1155, hospital- $A1800 including overnight stay, anesthesiologist-$A700. 1 Australian dollar is worth approximately .78 USD. Anyway I was guessing (uneducated) that the surgery in the US might cost approximately $20,000.00, so I wonder how far off I am. Please don't feel obliged to tell me if you're not comfortable. By the way the surgeon here is a great guy, former Waallaby player (national rugby team) who used to be one of the team doctors for the Cleveland Browns, Indians and Cavilers in the late 1980's. I really lucked out finding him because finding a surgeon who isn't on vacation from Dec. 20 to mid to late January is almost impossible. It's not a knock on them, it is just the way it is during summer and the "festive season", as they call it here. A neighbor of ours is a retired doctor and he got the surgeon to see me the same day he called (which was the surgeons first day back from vacation) and to perform surgery the next day. Otherwise, I might still be waiting and, as you know, that is not the preferred way to go. Anyway I wish you all the best and a speedy recovery. I hope your PT goes well. Mine has started off slowly, but I think that's the way the surgeon wants to do it for now. Sorry for going on and on. Keep us posted on your recovery BIG JOHN.

  15. #15
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    Well Man I'd Have To Look It Up But My Part Was 5k.boy That Hurt Too, But It's All Good,look At The Posts Here, Some Got It Alot Worse, I Will Post About Pt Progress.

  16. #16
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    I ruptured mine in July 2003, right after I turned 40 (welcome to the club). Similar story. Playing tennis. Big first acceleration to go for a short ball. No big pop, but the feeling of multiple rubber bands popping as I fell face first. No big pain really, but I pretty much knew what I had done. Had surgury a week later to repair (August 1). Was in an aircast on crutches for six weeks. Off crutches another two. Followed by some rehab. I was actually back riding my mountain bike by Christmas, albeit with the instructions not to stand up and hammer. Slow process to build strength and endurance back up, but it will come. Bigger issue to me was/is the mental side. I don't want to go through that again, so I am a little paranoid now when something doesn't feel right.

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    I know exactly what you mean. I sure as hell don't want to go through this again and I can bet none of the other guys does. I didn't have much pain either, both after the injury and the surgery. It is funny though when you see people and they ask about your injury and you tell them, they always get this horrified look on their faces. No good comes out of this injury, in my opinion. The trick is to not do it again and I admit to being concerned about the other one as I hop around in my present state with all my weight on my "good" ankle.

  18. #18
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    It is a tough injury to over come mentally and physically. The hardest part is learning patience. My first instinct after recovering from the surgery was to go out and work as hard as possible to get back to walking and riding. Wrong! My leg muscles were virtually nonexistent. Probably the most work was building those back up with out injury to another part of my body. It's amazing how much the entire right side of my body had wasted away in two months of inactivity.
    I can look back now and laugh at my whining and complaining on how hard it was to do simple things. In all honesty, the rupture was probably the best thing to happen to me. I was sliding into middle age, gaining weight and riding less and less. After the injury I decided I wasn't going to let down the people who had supported me in my recovery. I had a friend who was a physical therapist and had one of his staff members see me for free. My wife and daughter were extremely patient with me the whole time. I had to go to my daughter's high school graduation on crutches a week after surgery and I know that I took a lot of the spotlight away from her even though I tried not to. Due to the loss of balance I dropped and broke a couple of my wife's collectables by accident and she was so nice about it, I felt horrible.
    I had plenty of support and am trying to pay it back by being fit and healthy the rest of my life as an example to others.
    Keep your head up, keep working, you can come back from this injury, lots of people do.

  19. #19
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    Yeah My Goal Too Dantley. Going To Get Fit And Stay Around As Long As Possible. I Had Just Started To Ride Regularly Again,was Lifting,after Getting Lazy.popped Mine Playing Volleyball.patience,patience,patience

  20. #20
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    Go for it Big John! Keep me posted on the progress.
    I was playing soccer when mine ruptured.
    "Do or do not, there is no try." Yoda

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    You are an inspiration Dantley! No doubt about coming back, it's just for the last year I've been riding more than I have in a long long time. No mas, at this time. Them's the breaks. I'm off to Minneapolis and Cincinnati for the next month so I'll get the traveling with crutches thing down. Thanks all of you for your stories and positive outlooks.

  22. #22
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    Hi,

    I completely ruptured my achilles tendon last wednesday (06/06/07) playing soccer-pushed off on left foot,heard 'pop' went to ground.The First aider at the sports complex advised to put ice on it an leave it raised!!The cheek!I knew it was my achilles,confirmed in casualty by Docs.Went back in next day to have smaller cast fitted BUT the doctor talked me into non surgical route!This was not due to any medical reasons - Im 27,fit and healty-so stressed now about not getting surgery.I know its not too late so looking for second opinon.I have lost a lot of weight in short space of time,started cycling (LEISURELY) and playing football an badminton.The day it happened I actually ran around more than I had in ages an with 5 minutes to go I dont my achilles!Was about to offer to go in goal to catch a breather but thought might aswell see out the last 5 mins before injury happebd!Sods law!

    Now not sure about surgery.Also worried about re-injury.

  23. #23
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    Hi Shamim,
    I am sorry to hear about your Achilles. I did my right Achilles playing soccer in mid Feb. I had surgery the next day and am just now walking with one crutch. I am surprised, that for one, that you seem to be quite young for this injury (It usually happens to old dudes like me i.e. 40s and I think its about 80% male to 20 %female). I guess its one of those freak things. Secondly, I am surprised that the doctor would not insist on surgery. If you leave it and it rejoins, there is no way to know if it will join that the proper location. Also, it is important to have surgery fairly soon after the injury because otherwise the tendon will retract into the calf and make the surgery more difficult. I would suggest that you get a second opinion. Best wishes.

  24. #24
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    Sorry you did that Mate. Your doctor must be a Kiwi! My doctor, an Aussie, says they hardly ever do the surgery over the ditch in NZ. He told me a number of All Blacks have not had surgery and recuperated. The downside is the rupture rate is, according to my Dr. 50% higher without the surgery plus the recuperation time is longer. Maybe there is a a correlation between your relative youth and successful no surgery outcomes. I know they almost always do the surgery down here and in the US. I agree with powerhd, if your going to have surgery do it soon, for the reason he states. I was told 10 days on the outside. On the plus side I did mine in on Jan 5 and had the surgery Jan 9. I can walk normally and will be back in the saddle in 1 month. Despite what others may say take the recovery easy. I have heard of more people pushing themselves and stretching the thing too much too soon. If you stretch it too much you are a gimp without further surgery. From what I've heard with the surgery it is 6-12 months till full recuperation. There are some other threads in here where guys are riding their bikes 2-3 months after surgery. From what I have experienced and learned that is nuts. No matter who you are the AT is a slow healer because it has relatively little blood supply. I'm no Dr. so I don't really know, but a second opinion from a respected surgeon very soon can't hurt you. All the best.

  25. #25
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    Hey Aussie:

    Sorry to hear that. I ruptured mine about 12 years ago - karate. Remember that is a non-weight bering cast for the duration and keep it elevated.

    As far as my experience w/physical therapy. I found that the easiest muscles to rehab are the quads and the biceps phemorous (right above your HAMMIE) most difficult is the foot, but it is the most important muscle group to focus on in the beginning. If your foot stays weak, then it is far more difficult to rehab your calf. But I felt just as strong about a year and a half after the initial injury and was biking and doing wind sprints less than a year after. Just get on the rehab as soon as you can and don't stop until your back.

    Good luck!

  26. #26
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    Thanks for all the info. I went down to SLC to do my fourth cross race Dec 1st. I was glad I had brought my spare wheelset mounted with studded tires. My race was going good until the first run-up, when I thought someone had run into me from behind. I turned around to give them and their was no one there. When I took my next step my right leg didn't work anymore. I had ruptured my achilles tendon. I had surgery on the following Wed., it went well and I should be good as new I hope in about four months. My Dr. at clinic said it was too bad it wasn't a broken bone, as it would be healed in six to eight weeks. Luckily the ski resorts are going to refund my season passes (~ $900). I have good insurance, lots of sick leave (500+ hrs) and a great boss who said to do what it takes to get well. You know happens and you just have to deal with it.
    I'm not in pic, but you can see little run-up that I hurt my leg on.
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  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spoon Farmer
    Thanks for all the info. I went down to SLC to do my fourth cross race Dec 1st. I was glad I had brought my spare wheelset mounted with studded tires. My race was going good until the first run-up, when I thought someone had run into me from behind. I turned around to give them and their was no one there. When I took my next step my right leg didn't work anymore. I had ruptured my achilles tendon. I had surgery on the following Wed., it went well and I should be good as new I hope in about four months. My Dr. at clinic said it was too bad it wasn't a broken bone, as it would be healed in six to eight weeks. Luckily the ski resorts are going to refund my season passes (~ $900). I have good insurance, lots of sick leave (500+ hrs) and a great boss who said to do what it takes to get well. You know happens and you just have to deal with it.
    I'm not in pic, but you can see little run-up that I hurt my leg on.
    w_20071202082552584600a.jpg
    Sorry to hear about the injury, good luck in recovery.

    Dantley
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  28. #28
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    week 1 after surgury

    Hey,

    I am now an unwilling member of the AT rupture club. Thanks for the info guys. It's good to start wrapping the mind around the general timeline of recovery. I would like to start spinning on a stationary bike by strapping my boot on. I'll check with the experts just wondering if anyone tried this earlyon in their recovery.

    Ride on
    Idris

  29. #29
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    Sorry to hear you have joined our club!

    I rode stationary bike at gym the day before I went in for surgery (two days after injury), and again four days after surgery.

    I spent a Month in a non-wieght bearing hard cast. I found I could ride the gym's belt driven, flywheeled bike with just one leg.
    The casted leg was just along for the ride. At first I could only do it 10 minutes but soon I was up to a hour three days a week. I followed riding by a light weight workout.

    Three weeks ago they cut off the hard cast. The Surgon said leg looked real good (see pic) I almost said "I would hate to see one look's bad"!

    I'm now in a load bearing soft cast. It has four wedges in it which I remove one every two weeks, until foot is back into it's normal position. When I asked him if I could walk using this cast he just smiled and said it would be difficult to walk when one leg is tippy-toed, four inches higher than the other.

    I built a four inch high boot for my good foot and was walking (a bit like Frankenstein) the next day. I can now ride my bike at home on trainer and have been riding it along with gym's stationary bike four to five days a week. I can now stand while riding but have not pushed hard while standing. I'm just taking weight off butt and stretching my back.

    I still have five weeks before I start PT but I'm hoping to limit the lost of too much condition from injury.

    It's very important to follow your Dr. suggestions/orders. Mine told me that if I re-ruptured it before it healed he would have real hard time putting it back on, if at all! I feel luckly to live in a big ski town (home of USA ski/snowboard team) and have a lot of great sports medical professionals. Athletes come here from around the world to have their surgeries done.

    Good luck
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    Hey SF,

    Thanks for taking the time to share your info. Love the attitude! I see the Doc for my 1st follow-up in 8 days. I'm currently only in a cast tensor combo with general idea to keep leg up as much as possible. Plan is to go to the boot with wedges assuming there's no complcations. I've been doing range of motion exercises for the rest of the injured leg and a light dumbell/ ab/ stretch workout for the rest of the body. I'll talk to the Doc but I think starting some modified stationary biking makes sense. I'm up for having an active recovery like you but yeah lets not re-rupture cause that would suck!

    Did mine making a comeback to playing basketball - should of just stayed riding the mountain bike (with no run ups!).

    Idris

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    Hey SF,

    Wondering how your recovery's going. I've been alternating riding the stationary bike 60 min one day with my aircast on- talk about a stiff sole and weights the next day. The boot comes off on Mar 25. Spring is springing and I've been out doing some short rides with the aircast on and its doable. I'm thinking I might put it back on to ride while I'm working on getting fexability and strength back. Wondering if you've been able to do some outdoor rides and how you handled your first attempts?

    Heal On,

    Choc-remix

  32. #32
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    C R

    Glad to hear your getting out of your cast soon. You never said if you had surgery or not?

    My recovery has been going well, I got rid of soft-cast 2 weeks ago (6 weeks hard, 7 weeks soft). The only thing I use cast for now is to hold frozen gel packs (20 min 2 to 3 times a day).

    I did a 2 hr. ride within 48hrs.of getting cast off. First hour on road (to seat studs on new tires) and then onto smooth, groomed, soft XC track. I hit a pothole within the 5 min. of ride which hurt quite a bit, but now I know not to carry wt. on that leg when hitting bumps. Last weekend I did a 3 hr snowbike ride on Sat. and 4 hrs on Sun. (see pics). I can't standup on peddles much and lack power but it's GREAT! to be out riding again.

    I'm seeing a PT twice a week and he said I'm doing "phenomenal" at this point in my rehabilitation. I'm going to try hiking around using XC skis this weekend, and hope to go up on hill within the next two weeks.

    I hope you and the other members of our Club are healing well. I think it's a good idea for us keep updating thread as I found info from earlier Club members very helpful and hopefully we can be helpful to new Club members.

    SF
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    Wow,

    2 hr ride right after cast off - big kahunas!

    I'm 7 weeks post op - first 2 in cast/ tensor and will be 6 weeks in aircast boot with gradual removal of wedges. So boot comes off next week. I think my recovery is going well but I've got aways to go as my range of motion is pretty limited as doc recomended not going past 90 degrees flexion yet (foot flat when seated) and to start physio after boot off - so I haven't really done much strengthening yet. Thing is I can ride well enough with my aircast on that the fun factor outweighs the awkwardness but thinking definetly shouldn't try riding without boot yet as I felt a similar pain when hitting some larger bumps even with the boot on and my cushy all mt bike set to extra cushy!

    Pictures look great. I'm in Kamloops BC and I love riding this time of year as I ride silly early due to family/ work and I break out the lights and hit the trails were the snow has left and the ground is frozen and fast( later in the day its muddy). I watch the sunrise as I get back home. All is good.

    Again thanks for the input. You're hardcore and that's inspiring. Glad to hear its going well and I'm hoping I'll be able to do 2 hr rides without the boot by 13 weeks post op but I'll be okay if it takes a little longer!

    Ride On

    Choc -remix

  34. #34
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    Achilles Rupture Community

    Hi,

    I ruptured my Achilles in early Feb. and I am now finally starting to walk in normal shoes.
    PT has been great.

    I just wanted to let you know that there is a site dedicated to Achilles tendon rupture recovery. I hope you find the site useful: http://achillesblog.com

    There is also an active community there so maybe there can be some rehab tip sharing.

    thanks,
    Dennis

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    Hey Dennis,

    Thanks for the info. I've started a routine from my physio. I'm not covered so I'm going to see him every 3 weeks. I've just lost the limp walking on flat ground and am starting to feel some strength coming back. We 're close timeline wise as I did mine at the end of Jan. Have you been riding? I checked with my physio and he said to use the boot with one wedge back and try not to hammer. Thing is for my xc rides I'm not much slower in the boot! Might even enter a local race - wonder if they'll give me my own class. So I'm thinkng I'll play it conservative and keep wearing the boot for riding to maybe the 5 mon mark as my ortho doesn't even think mountain bike riding before 6 mons is a good idea.

    Heal On

    Idris

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    dennisATR

    Thanks for link. It's great to have more information, both for Club members and for those caring for us.

    Glad to hear chocolate-remix is healing well and getting out on his bike.
    I'm planning to wait until after six months post-opt before Mt bike racing.

    I had my four month check-up with my surgeon two weeks ago. I told him that I had been snowbiking (no cast) quite a bit (25+ hrs), had skied/snowboarded a few times and wanted to attempt my first road bike century of the season April 26th. He was worried about me standing on pedals going up hills for that long, as it's a hilly course. But when I told him that because of issues with my neck I only did long road rides using my recumbent and there's no standing on bent, he gave me the OK

    A tip I found is biking much more comfortable after I moved shoe cleats as far back as they can go.

    Ride On
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    Hey all,

    I too ruptured my Achilles about 6 years ago (Memorial day weekend) playing basketball. I thought someone hit me from behind and went to the ground. This happened on a Sat morning, had surgery that next Wed. Dr said the tendon was hanging like spaghetti and that made the surgery easier and the recovery time will be shorter. I was in a cast for 10 weeks 6 weeks with foot pointed down, removed cast, took out stitches and point the foot less than 90 degrees. Got out the cast, calf and thigh atrophy was bad, did PT 3 times a weeks, donít remember how long it was, but I worked my ass off in PT and I think that is the key. I was skiing by Dec. of that year.

    BTW Ė 4th of July weekend of 2006, I ruptured my patella tendon (now thatís in exclusive club). I worked hard in PT. Was skiing 8 months post OP.

    You get what you put into it. If youíre lazy in PT you will get lazy results. If you work hard in PT you will get better results. Just like life!
    "Live, Live, Live!. Life is a banquet but most poor suckers are starving to death!!!"

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    calf muscle

    hey there,

    did you actually get your entire calf muscle 100% back? i felt like i worked my ass off & the muscle doesn't even look like mine. works AOK, but looks like hell. if so, what type of exercises did you do that you thought were most beneficial?

    thanks-norman
    breezy shade

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    So--how to avoid an achilles tendon rupture?

    I stretch my achilles tendon/hamstrings every morning when I get out of bed (gently). I lean against a wall, straight legged till I feel a tug on my achilles/hams, then I gently bend my knees till I feel a pull specifically on my achilles tendon. At the gym I do calf raisers but I'm not crazy about a ton of weight, just a lot of reps with moderate weight. And stretch them the whole time I'm in the gym. And I ride a lot.

    What else can I do to moderate the chance of a achilles rupture?
    So it seems to me to be, this thing that I think I see.

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    Hi i`ve just recently signed up to this forum and looking for achilles injuries,came across yours.I completely tore mine about 8 weeks ago,went to a&e straight away said it was a strain,went back 2wks later same thing.Anyway went to a different hospital they kept me in the same day and had op the following day.I`m now into the fourth wk and of course wearing a boot.I`ve been told no physical activity for about 8mnths then maybe some light road cycling,will be swimming alot for recovery tho,will probably be looking to go on the trails again in about a 12mnth.You mention about the tendon being stronger than the other one,i hope this is the case,as i`m really worried about snapping it again.I tend to accelerate very hard on the trails and ride pretty aggresively and wondering will the tendon hold up.How long was it before u could ride properly again,do u feel confident in the tendon,does it give u any problems at all.Any advice on the subject will be greatfully recieved.cheers.Ride on dude.

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    Quote Originally Posted by rockyblizzard
    Hi i`ve just recently signed up to this forum and looking for achilles injuries,came across yours.I completely tore mine about 8 weeks ago,went to a&e straight away said it was a strain,went back 2wks later same thing.Anyway went to a different hospital they kept me in the same day and had op the following day.I`m now into the fourth wk and of course wearing a boot.I`ve been told no physical activity for about 8mnths then maybe some light road cycling,will be swimming alot for recovery tho,will probably be looking to go on the trails again in about a 12mnth.You mention about the tendon being stronger than the other one,i hope this is the case,as i`m really worried about snapping it again.I tend to accelerate very hard on the trails and ride pretty aggresively and wondering will the tendon hold up.How long was it before u could ride properly again,do u feel confident in the tendon,does it give u any problems at all.Any advice on the subject will be greatfully recieved.cheers.Ride on dude.
    Hi RockyB,
    It's been a few years now since I ruptured my Achilles and it's fine. I also was worried about re-injury and did not trust it at first. I don't worry about it too much anymore. I can ride any terrain and any distance with out it giving me any trouble at all. I was back on the stationary bike riding one legged three weeks after the surgery, I'd just prop my bad leg up out of the way and spin away. After six months of physical therapy I could run and ride the trails but in a limited way as the Achilles was painful. After a year I could train hard with out much pain at all. I did an ice bath on the Achilles every night for the first year which helped the recovery. Now its' been four years and I can pretty much do whatever I want to. I have been riding up to 140 miles per week, running 15 miles per week and hiking in the mountains with no problems. If the Achilles is sore I just ice and do careful stretching and then I'm good to go. Good luck with the recovery, if you have any specific questions feel free to send a PM.

    Adrian
    "Do or do not, there is no try." Yoda

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    Hi dantley.
    Thanks for the reply,nice to hear from somebody who had the same problem.Glad your back to normal fitness and everything has worked out ok.It also puts my mind at rest to know that hopefully i can return to full fitness,knowing its going to take time and a little patience Thanks for the advice.If i think of anything else will pm you.Keep riding
    CHEERS DUDE!! .



    Be free to ride.Ride to be free!!!!
    Remember!! As long as you`ve got hold of the handlebar,your in control.

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    Hey RB,

    Those timelines seem conservative. It's been over a year for me and for riding the injury is fine. I trail rode mons 4-6 out with flats and the aircast back on (did a 40 km xc race with this set-up!). I then rode without aircast. My issue is that I got lazy and haven't really rehabed the injury for anything but riding. I stilll cannot sprint or jump effectively so playing other sports will need more focused rehab. So rehab on and resist the temptation to just ride!

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    Daammmmm....I just came to the injury forum to make a post about my left achillis being sore after a couple of long and hard training rides, had the pain before aswell on a stage race and saw this thread...how can I prevent it from ripping? How do I strech it?

  45. #45
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    been there done that, back in 99' running a 5k. do everything your physical therapist tells you to do. in just over a year I was running ultra marathons and did the Leadville trail 100 in 16 months. It does suck right now but you will get back to 100% in time. good luck.

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    Shitty deal. I didn't rupture mine, rather I caught at the micro tearing stage(still hurt like hell though). Physio healed the tears in about a month and a half. I am going on the two and a half month mark now and still fighting the last little bit of bursitis in my right heel. I'm running again (5k at a time) and can feel it biking when hammering through rocky sections, during g-outs and when doing not so smooth drops/jumps. Good luck to you.

  47. #47
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    Haha, I didn't learn the meaning of patience until I ruptured my Achilles tendon.
    "Do or do not, there is no try." Yoda

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    Hi choc.
    Nice to hear your doing good.On the rehab front, got way too much sports to do, ie,weight training,cycling,badminton, so shouldn`t get lazy.I do alot of weight training,but can`t get to the gym so i train at home 4 days a wk using dumbells,upper half,i also do a number of leg raises and hamstring curls with no weight at the moment , to try and keep a bit of muscle,luckily i had a lot of muscle in my legs before the op,as the muscle wastage is unbeleivable. Can`t wait to start proper physio tho.,and get some muscle back.Do you ride clipless,or flats?.I ride flats,and was wondering if these would be less strain on the tendon,especially going downhill and standing up.Also do you wear a boot type for more stability in the ankle,or just a normal shoe.Ride on.
    CHEERS DUDE!!!


    Be free to ride, ride to be free!
    Remember!!! as long as you`ve got hold of the handlebar,your in control!

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    Hi Daemon
    Did the damage playing five a side football,haven`t played for years,didn`t warm up properly,not used to running,big mistake: Been weight training for 17 years and wondering if i`ve actually weakened the tendon by doing heavy squats and heavy calf raises. Will be going alot lighter in those areas when i get back in the gym. As for exercises for you i would just concentrate on doing non weight bearing toe raises regularly
    and hamstring stretches,ie bend over touch your toes,to keep the tendon stretched and strong ,will get back to you with more advice next wk,after i`ve spoken to the physio for some advice myself. bigalso to choc remix,dantley,ejh,jettamike and all the other guys .Thanks for the support and encouragement!
    CHEERS DUDES!!!


    Be free to ride,ride to be free
    Remember!!! as long as you`ve got hold of the handlebar,youre in control

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    Hey RB,

    You are motivated! The one thing I did appreciate about having an injury that does take this long to come back was how much I was taking my body for granted. Being forty, this was definetly a wake-up call! So even though I'm not doing everything I could be, I'm doing more "body prep" than I was -when work, wife and kids let me!

    I've always rode both - mainly flats and then clips for the occaisional xc race I do and for longer trail rides. Flats give you more ability to adjust foot position to take pressure off the tendon so I would start with those. My ortho put me in an removable aircast from weeks 2-10 of my recovery. Along with resistance training and stretching, I rode stationary bike with aircast on right away and after riding stationary after the aircast was off for a bit decided (against orders) to trail ride by putting the aircast back on for my rides with flats. This worked well and got a lot of attention- rode this way till the 20 week mark. First few rides without aircast were tentative but soon felt fine. this is when I started doing less proper rehab and thus my injured leg still remains weaker. One thing I've learned is everyone's recovery is different partly based on their sport. I think if I was a basketball player I would have done a much more intense rehab.

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    Hi choc.
    Ye the motivation side of things won`t be a prob, as i say, the weight training which i`ve done for years is part of my lifestyle and will be, for as long as i`m able to carry on with it.Will carry the same discipline when i finally start work with my physio,as you said, you can`t get too lazy or you don`t get the results back,so will push myself hard but not to the point of undoing all the good work.I`m hoping i can train to the point of it being pretty strong again.The surgeon actually weaved the fibres back together so in theory should be quite strong to begin with.Don`t know if this is standard procedure or not!Would like to hear more about the aircast you talk about,is this the boot they place you in,its like a plastic cage with straps and a liner which you pump up! If this is the case and you went riding like that ,massive respect dude ,but you are one crazy mother
    I think with your rehab you probably worked to your bike fitness,as you say,if you were a basketball player,football player or such like you would gear yourself up to fitness in that sport,so don`t be too hard on yourself,there`s nothing stopping you anyway.Keep up the good work.
    CHEERS DUDE!!cornut:

    Be free to ride,ride to be free
    Remember!! as long as you`ve got hold of the handlebar,your in control

    I`m off now for a half hour walk,as i can`t quite cycle yet

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    Bonking ... not feelin' well Submitting my application for membership...

    Hi Guys,
    Just signing up as another member of the AT rupture club. I did mine Monday night (22/6/09) playing squash (racquetball to the Yanks?). No warning at all of impending doom, just stepping forward to make an easy return and "POP!", and I came up about a foot short of contacting the ball. Knew straight away what I had done and went to ground just as my oppenent (also a biking buddy) was celebrating taking the point!
    Even though it's winter here in Oz it's depressing reading all your posts about how long it's going to be before I'm back on the bike. I'm a keen night rider (usually posting or lurking on the Lights-DIY forum here) and just got my lights, full sus MTB and road bike back after living in England last year. It's possible that the increase in riding, particularly on the road, contributed to the injury, though more likely it was simply due to taking up squash again after nearly 20 years without playing.
    I haven't seen a surgeon yet, but my tear is quite high (at the gastroc muscle interface) which is not usually surgically repaired. See the surgeon tomorrow, wishfully thinking that the prognosis will be only 3 months off the bike instead of 6 or more. Atleast I hadn't booked my ski holiday yet for the winter, if it weren't for mediocre snow in NZ a few weeks ago we would have been booked in for a week in Wanaka next week!

    they say patience is a virtue, but unfortunately it's not one I'm over-endowed with...after only one night stuck in front of the TV I'm already bored with it...thank god the Tour starts soon!

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    Hi dsut4392
    Another unlucky member joining the AT rupture club.Shitty deal dude.It`s just so easy to do. Has it gone completely or a partial? You ain`t got a choice other than to be patient, and ye your right daytime tv is ****.I`m spending most days training,going for a walk for a hour and spending rest of my day playing guitar.One thing this has taught me, is how to be patient.I`ve got another 2 wks left in my boot then its off, can`t wait then physio.Good news is my physio is one hot chick Good luck and all the best with it dude


    Be free to ride.Ride to be free

    Remember!! as long as you`ve got hold of the handlebar, your in control.

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    Now I'm currently building up to 50% weight bearing over the next week, then up to 100% over the following week. At week 4 post-op the final heel wedges come out, and at week 6 post-op I can start wearing normal shoes again. This is about 6 weeks quicker than I expected.

    Not allowed to push-off the ball of that foot till 3 months post op, and 6 months is recommended before resuming normal sports activity. Should be allowed on the road bike at 3 months, but I think I will adjust my cleat position right back.

    Assuming all goes well with rehab, my wife said she will treat me to a ski holiday in Japan in late January, and surgeon has already given the OK!

    My only setback so far? Too much watching the TDF, last night I dreamt I was in the break-away an sprinting for a mountain summit, woke myself up with a sharp pain in the achilles from pushing on the pedals (which turned out to be the foot of the bed!)

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    Good to see I'm not on my own and a few other Aussies are posting.

    Yep 75% rupture left achilles training my U/14 boys soccer side (thought one of the little bastards had chopped me from behind). Was in plaster within 6hrs and surgeon advised no surgery but 9 weeks in plaster and I'm 2 weeks in.

    Very frustrating as I have been TV bound for 2 weeks and the WINTER weather on the Gold Coast has been a beautiful 24 / 25 degrees (or 75/77 in yank land) perfect MTB weather.

    I'm interested to read the different rehabs and castings from around the world but at least on this site the common denominator is getting back on the steed.

    Looks like a long road ahead and plenty of patience but I'm determined to fly to Canberra to spectate at the upcoming MTB World titles so that should get the juices flowing. Looks like a indoor trainer may be high on the list as well.

    Thanks to all for the posts and info it is much appreciated.......... and I have time to read.

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    Smile

    Quote Originally Posted by Houndog
    Good to see I'm not on my own and a few other Aussies are posting.

    Yep 75% rupture left achilles training my U/14 boys soccer side (thought one of the little bastards had chopped me from behind). Was in plaster within 6hrs and surgeon advised no surgery but 9 weeks in plaster and I'm 2 weeks in.

    Very frustrating as I have been TV bound for 2 weeks and the WINTER weather on the Gold Coast has been a beautiful 24 / 25 degrees (or 75/77 in yank land) perfect MTB weather.

    I'm interested to read the different rehabs and castings from around the world but at least on this site the common denominator is getting back on the steed.

    Looks like a long road ahead and plenty of patience but I'm determined to fly to Canberra to spectate at the upcoming MTB World titles so that should get the juices flowing. Looks like a indoor trainer may be high on the list as well.

    Thanks to all for the posts and info it is much appreciated.......... and I have time to read.

    Hi Houndog,

    Welcome

    The weather can be a curse and a blessing - it has been rubbish here in Tassie, so I haven't felt so bad about not riding as my mates aren't either. The down side is I can't even sit outside in the garden, or get the veggie patch sorted for spring. And keeping the boot clean so I could wear it indoors was also tricky (kept me using crutches longer than otherwise necessary).

    How much did you tell your surgeon about your lifestyle and sporting expectations? There is some pretty good evidence out there on surgical treatment and early weightbearing improving the outcomes, especially for active people. Unless your surgeon gave you a good explanation of what your options are, and why conservative treatment is better for you, I would be seeking a second opinion (or at least asking for an explanation). 9 weeks seems like an awful long time...

    For useful resources (and a place to waste time!) check out Dennis' site linked above, achillesblog.com - there are hundreds of cripples just like us on there. PeterH's blog is particularly worth looking at, has a great photo of him doing a 2m drop while wearing his cam boot just a few months after surgery!

    An update on my situation. I had a surgical repair on my complete rupture (which turned out on ultrasound to be just a simple rupture not involving the muscle) 10 days after the injury. I went straight into a cam-boot brace with about 30 degrees plantar flexion after surgery, this way the boot was billed as part of surgery instead of me paying for it later on. FWIW, it might be worth a couple of hundred dollars to be in a cast for the first two weeks as the boot is an absolute biatch to sleep in!

    2 weeks after surgery I had my first post-op review, half the heel raise came out of the boot, and I was told to start partial weight bearing, working up to full weight bearing by 4 weeks. At 4 weeks I also took the last heel wedge out of the boot. I was also cleared to sleep without the boot at 2 weeks, which was pretty scary at first but much more comfortable. By 3 weeks after surgery I was full weight bearing in the boot.
    It's now just over 6 weeks since surgery and I'm wearing the boot to walk around outdoors, but going without at home and at work (CAREFULLY!).

    I haven't been riding outdoors yet, but have been riding a trainer since week 3 in the boot, pedalling full force including standing. Torpedo have a trainer on sale for a great price this week, $50 less than the cheapest I could find, and a better model too Also doing lots of self-guided rehab in the swimming pool which is great, basically walking forwards/backwards side-to-side. Also doing plenty of exercises from the achillesblog site (thanks Dennis!).

    This weekend my plan is (weather permitting) to go for a short flat ride outdoors, test out a modified brace I am working on which should interfere less with the crank arm than the massive cam boot.

    I'm seeing a physio on monday, but unless they can give me something special to help recovery I'll look after most of my own rehab based on what Dr Google and Dr Pubmed tell me (YMMV and all that; I'm a trained research scientist with publications in peer-reviewed biomedical journals, so I'm comfortable I know what I'm doing there). My next appointment with the surgeon isn't until 10 weeks post-op - while he has recommended early weight-bearing and rehab starting at week 6 (which I actually started at week 3), he hasn't been very specific as to what he means by rehab!

    Have fun at the Worlds
    Dylan (dsut4392 here and on achillesblog)

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    Countries and States

    This thread is awsome and i find it to be a great resource because i am going through ATR recovery right now. the thing about MTBR that has bugged me for a long time is that countries and states are not posted with the peoples screen names. the purpose for this thread would be to what therapies are applied in different areas of the world. im in Los Angeles and i get the boot after three months of cast. this differs from some peoples recovery. but i wonder if its just regional or what!

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    Quote Originally Posted by myke2241
    This thread is awsome and i find it to be a great resource because i am going through ATR recovery right now. the thing about MTBR that has bugged me for a long time is that countries and states are not posted with the peoples screen names. the purpose for this thread would be to what therapies are applied in different areas of the world. im in Los Angeles and i get the boot after three months of cast. this differs from some peoples recovery. but i wonder if its just regional or what!

    I'm in Los Gatos, California. Good luck with the recovery!
    "Do or do not, there is no try." Yoda

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    I have not posted here in a while but came to do some research because I just joined the ATR club. anyone do trainer riding with the good leg to keep fitness up?

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    i figure the one good leg is already lifting twice the load on normal day to day tasks. i dont think you would want to injury the other / only good leg you have. that being said. it do use a Compex lightly on my bad leg (quad area). but it has lost a good deal of mass since my injury.

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    Quote Originally Posted by john224
    I have not posted here in a while but came to do some research because I just joined the ATR club. anyone do trainer riding with the good leg to keep fitness up?
    I found it was the opposite. Due to all stretches/exercises on the injured leg that it was getting stronger than the healthy one. I made a point of doing the therapy evenly on both legs.

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    i am talking about if the cast is not off yet. I.E. riding a trainer with one leg.

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    I rode the trainer with one leg, I took the pedal off and propped up my cast on a couch.
    "Do or do not, there is no try." Yoda

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    I have been rock'n the Crutch for about two months now. sometimes i have to go long distances on my crutches. since one of your ankles is now carrying twice the load and impact as it was before. i honestly think you are better off saving your energy unless you never have to go anywhere. as i have found with all the one legged balancing, hoping around and everything else. i am now seeing signs of tendonitse in my one good ankle. so i highly recommend just taking it easy an not over doing it.


    Quote Originally Posted by Dantley
    I rode the trainer with one leg, I took the pedal off and propped up my cast on a couch.

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    I spent the better part of the last 8 months getting in really good shape and loosing weight as a result. I focused my training on running mainly and was able to ride when time allowed. Just as I was starting to plan out some cool trail riding vacation with some friends, my AT gave out and I am already starting to see the potential for weight gain, and I'm not talking about the healthy weight gain either...I already accepted the fact that my aerobic fitness will suffer for sure, but thought I can work on spinning form with the good leg and maybe get a little aero work out as a bonus. It might be a little aggressive and too ambitious...right now I can barely sit with the leg in the down position 3 days after surgery...

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    Its only 3 days after your surgery!!!! dude, i cant tell you what to do but that is about the worst thing you could 3 days out (no offense). you are at a higher risk of reinjury. you need to focus on resting because this is when some very important heeling takes place. you don't want want to be moving much after the surgery. if you you are going to be riding your trainer. which i don't recommend. i would wait till you at least have the hard cast replacement (about two weeks after surgery).

    like i said before. you will be putting twice the load on that one good ankle. you want it to be healthy. if you think you wont be working out, you are wrong! i have built so much upper body mass since my injury, shirts are starting not fit. you can also lose weight with changes to your diet. i found this was a good time to rethink when and what i actually eat. i have already dropped a few pounds and gain a good amount of mass on my good leg.

    i was planning some cool rides too. one day after my injury a big Time box showed up at my door. it was my new Time RXR frame set. hows that for sucks!

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    Quote Originally Posted by myke2241
    i am talking about if the cast is not off yet. I.E. riding a trainer with one leg.
    Yes, did that. Like the other poster, I took the pedal off and propped my bad leg up.

    I was also partial-weight-bearing a boot from 2 weeks, and started on the trainer with the boot around 3-4 weeks post-op.

    Felt good to finally do some exercise, but got myself a splitting headache from dehydration after my first big session at around 4 weeks, did about 90 minutes at full-gas and left a big puddle on the floor

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    thanks for the advise Myke, I am in no condition to do anything at this moment. About the only thing I can do without help is go to the restroom. And even that is a big task. I am definitely not looking to do any training before week 3 or 4 at the earliest.

    I do like the idea of a recovery gift I have nothing but time to look on the internet for deals...

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    Follow your Dr.'s Advice

    John-
    I feel for you brother. My best advice is the obvious, listen to your doctor. I don't know about weight bearing after two weeks. I didn't do anything like that. I didn't ride for six months. I can tell you this though, four years on my injured leg is as strong, but not as pretty, as the uninjured one. As I understood it from my doctor, the achilles tendon is a very slow healer given what little blood supply it receives. He said the rerupture rate in the first year after surgery is much greater for those who push their rehab. Best of luck with your recovery. Even if it is a way off, there is light at the end of the tunnel!

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    aussieklein -
    thanks for the well wishes, I'm hoping for a speedy recovery as well but will be cautious about how much to push it. It seems to me a broken bone would have been easier to recover from and much less time required than the tendon. Honestly, I've never heard of people having this type of injury. After reading the blog posted above, it seems like a common problem for those who keep an active lifestyle with an aging body...I will listen to my body for sure, but I don't want to just do the minimum. Anyways, it might be awhile until I get to ride again...I am now considering selling the bike to build the ultimate trail bike that I always wanted, I'll have quite a bit of time to put it together....I have an 08 S-works Stumpy but am thinking about one of those 29r...decisions, decisions...

  71. #71
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    New Club Members!

    Sorry to see Thread so active. aussieklein's - advice to follow your Doctors instructions is a good one. I wish you all the best of luck in your rehabs.

  72. #72
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    Hey y'all, joined the AT rupture club Feb 19, had surgery March 4th. I was only in a hard cast one week, have been in awkward boot since. Just 3 days ago I was allowed to start putting weight on injured foot while walking with crutches. All the doctor told me was if it starts to swell back off. It did start to swell yesterday, so I iced with gel packs last night. Because her instructions were so vague, I asked to come in to see her for direction. Instead, she gave me a scrip for PT instead, tomorrow is my first PT session.

    I'm sure, I must be like others in the club, eager to rehab, but want to make sure I don't do too little or too much. I'm hoping I get good direction from the therapist.

    After the injury I did research on the internet on this injury. As you know the more you learn about the injury...well it can be depressing. But coming across your stories, I have to say inspired me to get back into cycling. I'm 61, and years ago I biked a lot did triathlons but finally segued into flat water kayaking. This injury however has really motivated me to get back into biking. I've already ordered my bike. However, I've re-read your posts and realize biking this summer may be a bit of a stretch. I guess my first goal is just to get walking again.

    After all that, all I really want to say, is thanks for sharing your stories. I found them very inspiring!

  73. #73
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    Thanks spoon.
    Boo, wish you have speedy rec

  74. #74
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    Hey, John you too! Keep that leg elevated.

    Btw, going to the bathroom was such a pain at night (I am 61) that I got the urinal that I had in my kayak and put that next to my bed. A urinal btw, is just a plastic bottle with a handle and a lid on it. You can get them at any drugstore.

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    Oh I know that feeling too well! Been battling this lack of mobility issue which is downright depressing considering all the active things I like to do. This Friday is the transition from cast to boot if it all goes well!

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    Good luck tomorrow. I totally know what you mean about the lack of mobility and how it effects your mood. The one good thing, each little bit of progress does buoy the spirits. I guarantee you'll be feeling perkier tomorrow, once you switch from the cast to the boot!

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    Wink

    Das boot! Cast came off today, suture came out....military nurse, so it went something like this...
    Nurse cuts off the end knot, the. Takes a pair of tweezers and starts to pull on it thinking it will come out like a thread. About a minute of this and I'm trying to tough it out...finally, I can't take it anymore...
    Me- stop! What are you doing?

    Nurse- I'm trying to get the suture off, but it's in the flesh pretty deep...I'm gonna have to tug on it harder...

    Me- like hell you will! You need to cut it in small pieces and pull out small chunks at a time.

    Nurse- I haven't done such a long suture before, so I'm surprised it stuck to the flesh that much...

    Me- you've never taken this before...? Can you just give me the twizers and scissors...I've had many stitches put on and taken off before...

    5 minutes later and a lot less pain than the first minute...all is well! I'm surprised how much the calf has shrunk in this short time. Still non weight bearing for another week and then I should start to put some weight with the assistance of the crutches and then over to the walking cane two weeks later!

    Progress!

  78. #78
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    Wow, am I glad my surgeon took the stitches out. Just reading that was painful.

    You are way ahead of me, it took seven weeks after surgery before I was allowed to put weight on the foot with crutches, that was just last Monday.

    Keep up the good work
    Last edited by boogoshea; 04-22-2011 at 03:07 PM.

  79. #79
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    Quote Originally Posted by boogoshea
    Hey y'all, joined the AT rupture club Feb 19, had surgery March 4th. I was only in a hard cast one week, have been in awkward boot since. Just 3 days ago I was allowed to start putting weight on injured foot while walking with crutches. All the doctor told me was if it starts to swell back off. It did start to swell yesterday, so I iced with gel packs last night. Because her instructions were so vague, I asked to come in to see her for direction. Instead, she gave me a scrip for PT instead, tomorrow is my first PT session.

    I'm sure, I must be like others in the club, eager to rehab, but want to make sure I don't do too little or too much. I'm hoping I get good direction from the therapist.

    After the injury I did research on the internet on this injury. As you know the more you learn about the injury...well it can be depressing. But coming across your stories, I have to say inspired me to get back into cycling. I'm 61, and years ago I biked a lot did triathlons but finally segued into flat water kayaking. This injury however has really motivated me to get back into biking. I've already ordered my bike. However, I've re-read your posts and realize biking this summer may be a bit of a stretch. I guess my first goal is just to get walking again.

    After all that, all I really want to say, is thanks for sharing your stories. I found them very inspiring!
    I'm close to 2 years post ATR and well past needing a bottle at my bedside, but thanks for the tip about using one sea kayaking - for some reason I never thought of it and have always relied on having a landing every few hours (and drinking not so much!)

    Your weightbearing timeline is pretty conservative, but even so, now that you're starting PT you should start improving in leaps and bounds. So long as you work up to it gradually you could easily be out riding in the woods by late June.

    I started on the bike trainer really early, as soon as I was allowed partial weight bearing (about 3-4 weeks post op). From memory I was back to daily commuting by bike by 10 weeks post op (without boot, but using flat pedals), and I was mountain biking on technical singletrack with the boot at 12 weeks.

    Check out the achillesblog.com forum for lots more tips than you'll find here. Another guy on there (not me) was riding huge North Shore style drops in his boot at 12 weeks post rupture.

  80. #80
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    Glad the urinal will work for you in the kayak. It beats the hell out of not drinking enough or looking for a place to take out so you can pee.

    Thanks for the link. I'll check it out.

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    Had a appointment this week. My doctor told me my tendon was basically healed (awesome), and the curve ball. He proceeded to tell me that i was doing so well he i can just rehab myself! i know not to over do things and take it slow. but i thought it was also pretty funny he said that.

    if there is anyone who is in rehab right now that wants to explain what they are doing and what works for them would be mucho sweet!

    I have been meaning post some pictures of my VacoCast. Much better then the boot my Doctor gave me. Vaco claims their boots help speed up the healing process up to 25% quicker.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Achilles Tendon Rupture-img_0365.jpg  

    Achilles Tendon Rupture-img_0366.jpg  

    Achilles Tendon Rupture-img_0367.jpg  


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    Good job!

    Pretty sweet looking boot! It has been 8 weeks since the surgery for me and I transitioned to the boot at week 4, and this week is the last week in the boot. I've been doing ROM without resistance since week 5 and the PT gave me some elastomer bands to do strength training for plantar flex and the in and out resistance training at week 6. Dorsiflex exercises are still without the bands. Last week they wanted me to start walking FWB at home to prepare for this week when I finally ditch the boot. I was a little paranoid about it, but it's coming along. I'm still not rotating the foot all the way yet but it was expected.

    I thought I was going to be able to ride the bike on a trainer earlier but it was more of a PIA exercise than was worth it. I'll start this week with some platforms fitted on both pedals.

    Keep up the good work
    John

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    12 weeks after surgery for me. No more crutches as of 81 days after surgery. Still in boot, not nearly as sharp looking or probably as effective as Myke's. I will start physical therapy next Thursday. I'm walking about 3000 steps a day. My ankle will swell and I'll get some pain if I do more. The doctor just tells me to cut back when that happens. Haven't done much ROM exercises at all, just pointing foot up and down passively and actively. I expect to do much more once PT starts up.

    Like you John, I was a little paranoid when they had me put weight on the injured leg and especially when I was told to ditch the crutch. The crutch turned out to be a crutch for me. Now though it's like I'm free. I do miss the upper body workout though.

    I'm beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel. It's hard not to do too much, but I really don't want to risk re-injury. I bet I'll really be a little concerned when they start me walking in a shoe. But it will be great to get over that hump.

    One thing that concerns me is my doctor told me there is a 30 to 40% chance of re-rupturing the injured tendon. I said that seems high, and she said that was the medical lit says. That said she's only had two re-ruptures out of a couple hundred surgeries.

  84. #84
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    I joined the club last week with a complete rupture snowboarding. I waited 5 days before seeing the Dr. I thought it was getting better, gained some strength back, limped less. I even went on a 6 mile bike ride the day before seeing the Dr.

    This thread is great, gives me a good idea of what to expect, the short recovery and the long recovery. For piece of mind, I will expect the long recovery. That way if it takes that long I don't get as depressed about it and if it is short than that's good.

    Seems allot here tore the achilles doing something other than mountain biking.
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  85. #85
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    Dagen, sorry to hear you joined our exclusive club. I ruptured mine February 19th and just started riding my road bike again June 25. It is a slow process, it will teach you patience. It helps to take heart in each recovery advance post surgery, i.e. getting out of the cast, going to the boot, getting off crutches, putting weight on the injured foot, etc. I do think the fact the most of us were very active before the injury helped us in our recovery.

    When are you scheduled for surgery?

    Another one of our members gave me this site: achillesblog.com

    I think you'll find it very helpful, in giving you insight on what to expect.

    Best of luck, in your recovery. You will be surprised, as you get better, how you will appreciate the things you took for granted, and honestly that is quite nice.

  86. #86
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    Quote Originally Posted by boogoshea View Post
    Dagen, sorry to hear you joined our exclusive club. I ruptured mine February 19th and just started riding my road bike again June 25. It is a slow process, it will teach you patience. It helps to take heart in each recovery advance post surgery, i.e. getting out of the cast, going to the boot, getting off crutches, putting weight on the injured foot, etc. I do think the fact the most of us were very active before the injury helped us in our recovery.

    When are you scheduled for surgery?

    Another one of our members gave me this site: achillesblog.com

    I think you'll find it very helpful, in giving you insight on what to expect.

    Best of luck, in your recovery. You will be surprised, as you get better, how you will appreciate the things you took for granted, and honestly that is quite nice.
    I had surgery on June 29th.

    Yes, I have started looking at the blog already. Allot of good information, very helpful.

    Yeah, I do think being very active will help in the recovery, but it is also going to be a hard part to get over. Sitting around doing nothing is going to drive me crazy. The good side, my kids and my ex-wife are waiting on me hand and foot. Funny thing, I never got this much attention from my ex-wife when we were married.
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    That's funny. My wife did the same for me. She kept saying "just you wait, enry iggins, just you wait", from "My Fair Lady" meaning when I get better I'll be waiting on her. And it is a pleasure to be waiting on her now!

    I did do a lot on my crutches once I was able to lower my foot for extended periods. My chest actually showed the results. If you have any shoulder issues you'll need to be careful.

    I do feel your pain, for sure. Be patient, keep your leg elevated, and you will get better!

  88. #88
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    I got a knee scooter to allow me some more mobility. Plus my left hand is still healing from seven stitches months back and using the crotches reopened the cut on the hand.

    I did notice the workout the gut and back were getting when using the crotches, I could afford to loose a few inches on the waste.

    Feeling the pain is the biggest issue at this point. This is just post surgery pain from cutting into the ankle and sticthing the achilles back together. Vicadin only works so long, less time than the prescribed time between doses. Amazing how ice on the back of the knee does make the ankle feel better or numb.

    Thanks for your comments and thoughts.
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    ouch!

  90. #90
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    Quote Originally Posted by dagenhay View Post
    I got a knee scooter to allow me some more mobility. Plus my left hand is still healing from seven stitches months back and using the crotches reopened the cut on the hand.

    I did notice the workout the gut and back were getting when using the crotches, I could afford to loose a few inches on the waste.

    Feeling the pain is the biggest issue at this point. This is just post surgery pain from cutting into the ankle and sticthing the achilles back together. Vicadin only works so long, less time than the prescribed time between doses. Amazing how ice on the back of the knee does make the ankle feel better or numb.

    Thanks for your comments and thoughts.
    I agree on the ice. Now, I didn't have much post surgery pain at all. I stopped taking the percocet after two days. But, I think this is important, I followed the doctors instructions to the letter. I kept my foot elevated and I did the icing exactly as proscribed when I was awake. I believe it was 20 minutes on 30 minutes off. That said my doctor was amazed that I was not complaining of pain. Maybe I'm the exception, but maybe I'm one of the few that followed instructions to the letter. I hope by now your pain has become much more manageable.

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    Ouch - I joined the ATR club playing tennis

    Hi Guys,

    Thanks for all previous post and inspiration.

    I ruptured my Achilles the last weekend in April 2011 - 10 weeks ago playing tennis. I was completely warmed up and it happened without warning during the last 5 minutes of court time. I knew it as soon as I felt it. My momentum carried me forward another step and my whole foot was numb as I landed on it and fell forward onto the ground. (In early 40's and had just recently started playing again).

    I was in a cast for 8 days then walking boot with 3 heel wedges and full weight bearing since then. After 8 weeks down to 1 heel wedge and hopefully none in next week when see doctor for follow-up.

    Since stitches were removed at end of week 3 started riding stationary bike. Once sitting on bike took off walking boot and put on my sneakers to bike in. Doc was strong worded that needed to keep my toes pointing down and to not try pulling up on back stroke.

    At week 5 I developed a blood clot/DVT in my leg. There is always a small chance of this happening after any lower leg surgery (foot/ankle or knee). While DVT's happening are a small percentage, most of us are NOT aware of the symptoms and they can kill you. If you are having pain in calf or have pain right behind your knee you need to go to the ER immediately and have an ultrasound done. In my case I felt the pain behind my knee (popliteal vein) and went straight to Hospital.

    The DVT held up my recuperation for 2 1/2 weeks while getting anti-coagulated and keeping leg elevated most of the day/night.

    For last 2 1/2 weeks I have been actively doing range of motion exercises. Using different colored thera-bands for resistance - pushing my foot down against the bands and using bands to rebuild side-to-side strength. The best thing that I have been doing last 2 1/2 weeks (besides stationary bike) has been SWIMMING every other day (my Doctor encouraged me to start swimming). Yes, swimming laps - you can't overdo it in the water. For all of us that don't know "moderation" in exercise, swimming is the perfect solution. Not only do I feel great mentally after doing a cardio workout but my Achilles feels great and my calf muscle seems to be recovering faster. Beside regular swim strokes I take a kick board and do many laps on back and stomach while kicking and keeping my toes pointed down/back this way the water is providing all the resistance I need without overdoing it. It has really helped my spirits as all of us know this is a long rehab back to normal activity level.

    Most important thing I have learned through this injury is patience, patience, patience - slow down in life.

    Easy healing for all of us.
    Last edited by RupturedInColorado; 07-04-2011 at 11:36 AM. Reason: typo

  92. #92
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    I ruptured my Achilles the last weekend in April 2011 - 10 weeks ago playing tennis. I was completely warmed up and it happened without warning during the last 5 minutes of court time. I knew it as soon as I felt it. My momentum carried me forward another step and my whole foot was numb as I landed on it and fell forward onto the ground. (In early 40's and had just recently started playing again).
    i was playing soccer turn and popped it. complete rupture. it is interesting to see that people experienced the same feeling. my foot had a dull numb feeling when it happened. i would really describe to pain as painful just a bit strange feeling. more interesting is that i had just recently started playing indoor soccer again. like RupturedInColorado said about him just starting again with tennis.

  93. #93
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    So far here is my riding recovery schedule:

    6 weeks - rode mountain bike on road in boot - 7miles 1 (300 ft elev) hill, otherwise relatively flat
    8 weeks - rode mountain bike on old road no boot - 6 miles, 800 foot elev gain
    10 weeks - morning ride of 6 miles on old road, 800 foot elev gain and 14 miles on road - total 20 miles
    Working on standing on pedals
    12 weeks - rode trail with rocks, roots and ruts, slow and in saddle 1st - 2 miles up to 6 miles
    Working on standing on pedals over rocks, roots and ruts
    13 weeks rode downville downhill - 17 miles of rocks roots and ruts, walked some of the rock garden sections for fear of putting foot down ackwardly on jagged not flat rocks.

    I think this is a pretty fast recovery period. I can ride better than I can walk.
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  94. #94
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    Quote Originally Posted by aussieklein View Post
    Thanks for the kind words. Didn't see this injury coming. My only advice is to keep them stretched and avoid quick sprints, if possible, which is how I blew mine out.
    Two of my co-teachers have blown theirs playing basketball, so watch all players.
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    Hi all. I don't use this forum too much (especially for posting), as I'm based in the UK.

    However, I too joined the AT rupture club 7 weeks ago.

    After riding my bikes (mainly mtb) for 22 years plus, a week before my 40th birthday and 3 days into a 2 week stay at home holiday from work, I had an off whilst riding that resulted in me snapping the AT in my left leg in two.

    A 6 mile ride home and 3 hours later I was in a slab plaster with the diagnosis.

    The UK NHS in some areas now has a general policy towards non surgery treatment using Vacoped (cast) boots as shown a few posts above. Even a private consultant said it was the best way to go for me, so I am now 7 weeks into the repair stage.

    The main thing with this boot is that you can walk on it straight away. I was load bearing two days after the accident and have been ever since.

    Am now at the stage where they have allowed me -30 to 0 degrees movement in my foot, and it smarts like hell to take it to zero degrees (foot flat and stood up), so I am guessing it is healed but very tight.

    A week Tuesday coming my boot comes off and I start physio all things being equal.

    As alread said many times, this injury really is a hinderance on life and others around.

    My wife is doing all the driving and the majority of shopping / housework. I really do feel like a spare part, and will one day repay her when I am better.

    As a mtb'er, life will be very hard without riding my local trails for another 11 months, but this is a minimum period I have given myself - just to be 100% sure.

  96. #96
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    Quote Originally Posted by dagenhay View Post
    So far here is my riding recovery schedule:

    6 weeks - rode mountain bike on road in boot - 7miles 1 (300 ft elev) hill, otherwise relatively flat
    8 weeks - rode mountain bike on old road no boot - 6 miles, 800 foot elev gain
    10 weeks - morning ride of 6 miles on old road, 800 foot elev gain and 14 miles on road - total 20 miles
    Working on standing on pedals
    12 weeks - rode trail with rocks, roots and ruts, slow and in saddle 1st - 2 miles up to 6 miles
    Working on standing on pedals over rocks, roots and ruts
    13 weeks rode downville downhill - 17 miles of rocks roots and ruts, walked some of the rock garden sections for fear of putting foot down ackwardly on jagged not flat rocks.

    I think this is a pretty fast recovery period. I can ride better than I can walk.
    16 weeks - Hit this stepdown.
    Achilles Tendon Rupture-stepdown.jpg

    19 weeks - Snowboarded, hit this small box.
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  97. #97
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    Nice job Dag!

    (but, re-rupture within a year is not out of the question from what I've heard.)
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    I joined the "Ruptured Club" on Dec 4th playing flag football. No tackle, slip, trip or tumble, just a loud pop and fall flat on your face.

    One very common theme in the posts here is most ruptures occur playing force sprint sports:

    - tennis/badminton/squash
    - basketball
    - football
    - soccer

    The other theme is active males 30+ who just started playing the aforementioned type of sports. That certainly is my case. 35 years old. Excessively active, but out of character to be playing a field/court sport.

    The other theme that fits within my injury is there was no warning or tell tale pain and the injury occurred toward the end of the game.

    If I had a time machine I would have stretched more before and during (besides not playing in the game at all of course).

    I am in the air cast walking boot now at week 3 and using a knee scooter to get around because crutches suck. I am not doing any weight bearing or gym workouts of any type. But I hope to start doing some upper body routines soon to keep some level of fitness.

    I spent 2011 bike racing at a pretty competitive level so this injury really is a change of pace. I like the various comments about life learning and the word patience!

    I've got more info on my blog.
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    I also am a Charter Member. March 18th 2011 complete rupture riding on the back of a shopping cart at Costco.

    Started riding in mid June with mountain riding in mid Sept. Been 100% since then. Feel great!

  100. #100
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    Quote Originally Posted by dagenhay View Post
    16 weeks - Hit this stepdown.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    19 weeks - Snowboarded, hit this small box.
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    At just under 9 months from surgery, I ran a half marathon. No pain from the achilles but the rest of the legs are sore.
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