My ACL Surgery Recovery Story – Ben

A little while ago a reader wrote me to ask a few questions about my ACL surgery recovery and his ACL surgery story I thought was worth sharing. The interesting part about Ben’s story is the irony of it all…read on and find out how.

My acl injury story….. I am 39  from Minnesota and for the past few years I have been into racing ” vintage snowmobiles”. Normally we race on a lake, but the last race of the season, we have a race through the woods. As the race progressed, there were about six sleds really close together and things can get a little rough. Well, as things happen one of the other riders suddenly started sliding sideways in front of me so I had to swerve to miss him so I wouldn’t “T” bone him at 50 mph. As this happened, I had realized I was heading straight for a beautiful white oak tree, again at 50 mph. So in a split second I started to bail off my machine, but my leg was still draped over the seat. Which caused it to slam into the motor and then sent me sailing through the air about 25 feet. To be honest, I cant believe I didn’t break my leg. I was able to hobble back to my machine and I sat down on it and my first thought was I hope I didn’t tear my acl. Some friends pulled me out of the woods and loaded up my sled, or the remains of it anyways.

I Hope I Didn’t Tear My ACL

I stayed around for about a hour after, but the pain was getting too bad so I went home and iced it. The next day I went to the hospital and had an Xray and the Doctor said my acl was fine. Probably just a bad bruise. I never had any instability just a tremendous amount of pain and swelling. About five weeks went by, I decided to go see an Ortho Doc. He told me that I did in fact tear my acl. Or as he put it, “I think you got your acl buddy”. My heart sank. But that’s not all I also had a large tear of my medial meniscus and a lot of bone bruising in my femur and my tibia. I now have some extra bumps around my knee to prove it. Did I mention the person I swerved to miss was my brother……..

Snowmobile ACL Knee Injury

On May 2, 2011, about six weeks after my accident I had my surgery. I used my own patellar tendon as my graft. I am now about six months post-op.  Everything seems to be going fine. I got my full ROM back right away, but I can tell my leg is still weaker than the other one. I just keep doing my exercises and take it one day at a time. I do a lot of biking that has been my main source of therapy, but now the days are getting shorter and the weather is getting colder I have been doing more squats and things more focused on the quad strength. Lots of stretching too.


For me right now, the hardest part is being on my feet all day at work. My knee just gets a little sore and swells up through out the day. It does seem to be getting better. Ironically the reason I am on my feet all day is because I am a Surgical Technician and stand in a operating room all day and do procedures. Many times acl reconstructions. It is a interesting operation, just one I never wanted to have done on me……

If you are interested in sharing your story to the readers of ACL Surgery Recovery than please contact me.

The Top 5 At Home Exercises
I did that helped get me walking 4 days after surgery

Click Here to see the exercises


  1. Hey there! My name is Ashley and Im almost 14years old. A few months ago, the week we got back from thanksgiving break, I hurt my knee in basketball. I kept running on it until winter break.We just got the results back from my MRI. Apparently i tore over half of my ACL ligaments and serverly bruised my cartilage! And I may need surgery. Im going back to the doc in a few days and hes gonna tell me whats gonna be done. But I dont have the patience to wait. I just quit basketball and cross country, and i dont wanna have to give up track and soccer. So can someone please answer the following questions for me…
    1.) How long would i be on crutches if i do have surgery?
    2.) how long until i would be able to get back to sports?
    3.) how long would i have to be in rehab? (i dont have enough spare time to do rehab)
    4.) when i see the doc, how long would it take to schedule the surgery? like how long would i have to wait?
    Thank you(:

  2. Ashley,
    My name is Ken. I recently turned fifty- it’s really not that old! Anyways, I was out learning to ski with my family and I wiped out pretty good. The Dr says I tore my ACL. My MRI is tomorrow and I don’t see him until Thursday. Like you, I have lots of questions and am unsure of the ones I find on the Internet. I just really wanted you to know that you’re not alone. Not knowing really sux! I will post more here as I find out more about what’s going to happen to me. Good luck!

  3. By the way…I need to be close to 100% so I can wakeboard this summer:)

  4. Kelly Turk says:

    Hi, my son (15 yrs old) just had his acl repaired last week. His surgery was the one where the surgeon takes tendons from hamstring to place in his knee. The surgeon said everything looked great. Tonight he was on the bed, with his legs propped up. His 6’5″ , 280 pound brother accidentally fell ON HIS SHIN !! ( of his repaired knee!) he said it hurt a lot! My question is

    Do you think his repaired acl is still good and didn’t hurt it???