Recovery Story – Injured Knee Skiing

Here is a great ACL reconstruction recovery story from one of our fellow readers who tore his ACL while skiing.

First off I have to say that your site is very well done and delivers valuable information and insight to those of us dealing with ACL injuries. Having had two ACL surgeries, you can definitely relate to what we all are going through, and you provide a unique perspective from other websites that address the same topic. I’d be glad to contribute with feedback about my own situation and concerns.

As you did, I tore my ACL, MCL and meniscus doing something that I love to do. In fact, I tell people not to feel sorry for me because I was hollering “yeehaw!!!” and having the time of my life as I was glissading (French for “sliding on your butt”) down a long steep snowfield near Mt. Rainier here in Washington. My left foot jammed into the snow as I was going downhill under a fair bit of speed, and my knee locked and then twisted as the rest of my body sped on past. Ouch! I was able to finish the remaining two miles to the trail head, but my knee was hurting like it never hurt before. I’ve since had the MRI that confirmed the torn ACL and meniscus, so am having arthroscopic surgery in late-August to repair both. In the meantime, I’m following all of the pre-surgery advice you have on your website – doing the exercises, gathering post-surgery supplies, etc.

I have had good discussions with my surgeon about what to expect from the surgery and he has been encouraging, yet very honest, about what will be required of me post-surgery if I want to get back to having full confidence in my knee. All of his advice has tracked closely with the content of your website, and that’s one reason that I am feeling optimistic about my chances for a full recovery from this. Like you, as I grow older I want to have as few physical limitations as possible on the kinds of activities in which I can participate. I love to hike, both on and off trail, and do long distance backpacking, so being able to do those things again is what motivates me. I also have 11 grandkids and need to be in good shape to keep up with them!! I am committed to doing all the therapy and the exercises, and have no concerns about my ability to stick with it. I guess my biggest fear is that the reconstructed ACL will not respond to all of that, and will continue to give me problems on down the road.

My second biggest concern would be about managing the pain. My wife, who is a veteran of several surgeries, advises to keep ahead of the pain by taking the pain medications as prescribed, even if I feel I don’t need it. You give the exact same advice, so I will follow all of that advice and try to be optimistic that I can keep the pain at bay as much as possible. I don’t generally take pain relievers at the first twinge of pain, but I understand this will be more than a twinge. ha! ha!

Other than those things, I don’t have any other real concerns or fears. I have faith in my surgeon and my determination to make a full recovery, so I’m looking forward to getting this thing fixed!

Thanks again for your great website. I appreciate that you have created a little (or not-so-little) community of fellow ACL-injury victims and are providing valuable information and a place to share our stories and experiences and advice. I will continue to visit and post comments.

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

Click Here to see the exercises


  1. I had something similar happen to me skiing. Why is it we always tear our knees skiing.

    My question is would you wear a brace when you ski now?

  2. I had a total knee replacement on july 27 `2012 i am at theraphy 3 times a week and alsi i do theraphy at home 3 times a day.i am having a big problem with heels slides when i do it it feels like i can’t. Get it to go more and alot of oulling scar tissues are the worst i message them but i have to stop because it sends pains to my brain feels like its burning ripping and on fire.alsi when i do my leg up buttocks. It feels like it stu k and i cant push it anymore please tell me how to get thru this thanks I’m very grateful for all ur help and info videos sharon