Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Seventeen Degrees

That's how much flexion my right knee is lacking compared to my left knee.

Given that I had surgery ten days ago, that's a highly appealing number.

I went to physical therapy today to get evaluated and get a program that I could do at home. My orthopedist said I needed one visit to show me the program, then I should be fine at home, because I was "highly motivated."

Yes. Turning 50 and not wanting to become some kind of decrepit sinkhole tends to do that for a person.

When I arrived at the physical therapy place and met the P.T., though, I told him about the one visit approach and he objected. He spent a good ten minutes giving me a dozen good reasons why that wouldn't work.

Then he started describing individual therapy exercises. After he'd said "You need to do at least this many reps" about three times, I stopped.

"Don't give me that number," I said. "That's not the number I need."

"What do you mean?" he asked.

"I don't want to know how many I have to do," I said. "I want to know the the number that's the most I can do."

This went on for about another ten minutes as we worked through the program, and when we got to a squat exercise that had 20 reps in a set and I asked him if it would be safe to do 50, he started laughing. "Okay," he said. "I was wrong. You only need one visit."

We got to the end of the session and I told him I wanted to try an exercise bike (I hadn't ridden one yet since the surgery). He took me over to a bike and said, "Just ride with no resistance and see if you can pedal," he said. "I'm going to go get your folder together with instructions for all the exercises."

He came back five minutes later and I was cruising along at 90 RPM and felt fine. He started laughing again.

Damn. I'm 50, people, not 90.

So, in theory, I can skate in 4-5 weeks. And I am highly motivated to make that "4" instead of "5."

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