Knee Injuries, Winter Sports & Preventive Advice

In Bones & Muscles, Emergencies, First Aid, Prevention, Travel by Mariana CallejaLeave a Comment

Knee Injuries, Winter Ski

A Knee Injury Story

One year ago I learned how to ski and it was the best feeling ever! The magic of disconnection towards the white-lightened scenery was simply outstanding, the rush as I felt speeding down the slope, even when it was a green one. I felt brave, refreshed and completely on my own.

This bravery took me to the blue slope then. RAR! Why not? – I thought to myself. After 3 days of practicing with an instructor, it felt about time.

I was on top of the world and the slope in the majestic Pyrenees.

As I look down with a smile of utter satisfaction, it suddenly kicked in: FEAR.

-“It seems too steep…!”

-“How I’m going to…descend, stop, turn, argh!”

I had to get on the move. Brave-mode again. And down I went.

My moves seemed smooth and controllable at first just to turn into an uncontrollably tense body, legs and hips included. I just couldn’t manage the skis all of a sudden. I tried to stop. Attempt #1. Attempt #2. One more try sliding down. I catch some speed and I feel great! Then fear again…too fast, can’t stop!…

CLACK! CLACK!

I fall down to the floor in an aggressive turn of knees and a sudden release of the skis from my boots up into the air.

When I realise after a few seconds that I’m on the floor, I turn my head around. Then eyes to my legs. Toes are moving, phew! But OUCH…can’t stand up or make a single move. This position is quite uncomfortable and I can’t manage to stand up from the ground. My friend approaches and helps me get up on my feet again.

Scared, I begin my way down again. That was an aggressive move and I feel a bit confused and unsafe. My knee seems okay but I rather go back to the green-flagged slope. Fortunately, I was able to ski for one more hour.

All good. Until my knee cooled down. Oh, this is starting to hurt. But I’m a doctor, you know, so this will be okay with some ice, anti-inflammatory pills and a bit of rest. I decide to skip the slope’s doctor. (Don’t you ever do that. I won’t make this mistake ever again).

Long story short: almost two months passed by and my knee was still swollen, hurting and feeling compromised. I became afraid and ran for a knee scan and into the orthopedist’s office.

Sprained Knee – Level 1

(Damn, it felt like level 1000!)

After 2 months of growing worried and suspecting the worst, I fortunately found out it was nothing serious and that surgery wasn’t going to be required. Instead, I had to go into a 2-month knee rehabilitation program in Barcelona.

It wouldn’t be until 6 months after the event had taken place that I’d feel completely recovered.

Lessons learned after a knee injury?

Sports injuries of any kind must be checked immediately, even if you think it might be nothing.

All kinds of resorts (ski, beach, golf, etc.) always have medical attention available. Don’t make my same mistake and go get checked. Knee injuries can be the unexpected.

After any injury: get checked, put some ice and rest properly for a week. It will save you lots of time (months) of recovery, as I had to go through.

 

Knee Injuries

 For more prevention advice while you travel, go here.

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