Adaptive cycling is a great way for seniors to rehabilitate their knees after surgery or better yet before surgery is even necessary.
Benefits of Adaptive Cycling for Seniors
Increases or restores range of motion
Increases or restores knee joint stability
Increases or restores muscle strength
Decreases or eliminates pain
Prevents re-occurrence of injury
Is non weight-bearing
Is low impact
Is an aerobic (cardiovascular) workout
Offers variable resistance
Keeps you in a stable position
Also known as ‘stiff knee syndrome’ is said to be one of the most difficult orthopedic conditions to treat. It is an abnormality triggered by injury or trauma to the joint and is most common in the knee joint. In layman terms it is ‘excessive scar tissue that forms in the joint leading to limited range of motion’ despite rehabilitation efforts. Early recognition and proper treatment is critical for a best outcome. The Arthrofibrosis foundation is a great resource in helping understand this often frustrating condition.
According to Ortho Info, there were 10.4 million visits to doctors offices in 2010 for knee injuries. Common knee injuries include: fractures, dislocations, sprains and ligament tears. Nonsurgical treatments include immobilization, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medicines such as ibuprofen and physical therapy are often prescribed before exploring surgical options.
There are many types of knee surgery performed and one of the most common is meniscus cartilage repair or removal. This is usually performed arthroscopically as a minimum invasion technique. Meniscectomy is the official medical name. Other common knee surgeries are ACL repair or replacement and knee replacement.
Total Knee Replacement (TKR) or partial knee replacement have become some of the most common orthopedic surgeries performed with over 600,000 performed in the U.S. during 2016 alone, and various sources project over 3 million will be performed per year by 2030. Knee Arthritis is the root cause for many of these surgeries. Studies show that approximately 90% of people experience pain relief from knee replacement surgery but there are potential complications to be aware of from risk of infection to sometimes longer knee rehabilitation and challenges with regaining knee range of motion. Surgeons typically encourage patients to work to regain their range of motion early on in the knee rehabilitation process. Physical Therapy often includes the use of a stationary bike and later on, adaptive cycling can help patients gradually increase their knee range of motion during the knee replacement recovery process.
If you are an older adult that is trying to reduce or rehabilitate knee pain, you may want to consider outfitting your bike with a set of wheel stabilizers like FATWHEELS. These heavy duty “training wheels” retrofit to almost any bike on the market and they will provide you with the stability you need to enjoy the FUN, FREEDOM & HEALTH benefits of riding a bike.
Until next time,