Above knee amputee and fitness
6 Comments
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9
Susan Cotten
Enthusiast
July 29, 2015

Hi! Almost 7 years ago I was riding my bicycle when an SUV plowed into me and broke my neck, severly injured my leg and left me with road rash, cuts and bruises. As a result of the leg injury, my left leg was amputated above the knee almost 4 years ago. I'd been pretty active most of my adult life and after getting the hang of the prosthetic leg, I've done a pretty good job of coming back. I ride a spin bike or use an ellipitcal an hour per day 6-7 days per week (avg heart rate 140ish). Until a month or two ago, I had been doing Pilates (via Pilates Anytime) several days a week for the last 2-3 years. And by the way, I'm 60.

The reason I stopped doing Pilates is because it's all about symmetry and balance. No matter how hard I try, I'll never be able to achieve symmetry and balance. So I thought I'd just start doing bodyweight and dumbell exercises for my upper body and core. Yesterday I did Sarah Kusch's Core Workout #1 video. (It was killer!!!) Today my abs were sore (they NEVER get sore), but so was my lower back.

So, here's my question: Was I doing the exercises incorrectly or could it be the weight of the prosthetic leg is going to contribute to low back pain. And another question...I am not physically able to do lunges, squats, bicycle, bear crawl or other exercises that require bending my legs while performing the exercise. So many fitness videos have a lot of those types of exercises. Can anyone recommend some videos for core work that don't include those types of exercises?

(I can use the spin bike because I use clipless pedals, so the petals actually bend my knee for me.) THANKS!!!!

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48
Kim K.
Enthusiast
July 29, 2015

Hi Susan,

When doing core work on the floor, try to keep the lower back touching the floor. Tilt the pelvis forward to keep the spine in a more neutral position. Too much of a curvature in the lower spine will create undue stress. It's particularly helpful to put the hands under your butt to help keep the pelvis in the correct position.

There may also be some soreness in the back if the back muscles are compensating for the stomach muscles. Some soreness can be normal until your learn to engage the core more and not rely on the back to help. As long as there is no pain during the exercise, you should be ok. The soreness in the core is totally normal!

As for videos, I'll try to think back on them and see if I can come up with any specific to your needs.

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Sarah Kusch
Expert
August 4, 2015

Hi there! What Kim K. Wrote was perfect. And what you shared is extremely valuable to me as I design my next program in terms of your knee bending and symmetry.
In addition I would just like to acknowledge you immensely on your efforts AND your enthusiasm. You are a great example to those that have medical issues OR people that lack motivation in general.

I too, broke my neck, when I was 16. In a car accident. My neck, four ribs, four fingers, and my ankle. I was only 16 not even an adult and it was very hard coming back for me at an age that's easy. I want you to understand you are a badass:)
I clearly remember the discouragement and depression in the months to follow. You've had a profound comeback.

SuSusan Cottenhank you so much for sharing your story and I look forward to hearing about your fitness goals and results. 💜Sarah

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9
Susan Cotten
Enthusiast
August 5, 2015

Thank you so much, Kim!

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Susan Cotten
Enthusiast
August 5, 2015

Sarah,
That's the nicest thing anyone has ever said to me "I want you to understand you are a badass!!!!" THANK YOU!!!!

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Kelly Lee
Expert
November 21, 2015

LOVE how supportive our team is. Thank you Kim K. for your awesome post! You are an amazing teammate.

Susan Cotten Thanks for sharing your inspiring story! Congratulations on finding ways to stay fit and active.
I have a few core videos and a HIIT Arms workout that would be great for you. I would love to hear how your journey progresses.

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