Nearly all injuries in alpine skiing are classified as traumatic, or due to a fall. As mentioned earlier, under Strength & Injury Prevention, the majority of knee injuries in alpine skiing occur on the left knee. Therefore it is important to work on your ski technique to be able to turn equally well to your right and left. With the snowpack being shallower and conditions not yet epic, the early season is a great time to work on perfecting your turns. Aim to stay balanced on your skis with your hips centered and perfect your turns to both sides. A Professional Ski Instructor or coach can make all the difference, so take the time to perfect your technique by taking a lesson at one or our local ski resorts, or sign-up for coaching from a community ski team such as the Bridger Ski Foundation (BSF).
ACL Injury Prevention
To reduce your risk of injury it is important to make sure your bindings are properly mounted and maintained. Your ski is effectively a long lever arm and if your ski does not release properly it will put a tremendous amount of force through your knee. Therefore it is important to make sure your DIN is set properly, and to check that the release mechanism is working properly regularly. Keep in mind that due to gender differences in strength and morphology, the DIN on women’s bindings should be set at 15% below the recommended universal setting. So before you get out for your first turns of the season, check your equipment and get assistance from your local independent ski shop if necessary. (more…)
Developing and performing a proper pre-season/dry-land strengthening program can help to reduce your risk of injury and improve your performance. Alpine skiing is unique in that it places equal demands on both sides of the body, as one has to be able to turn equally well to the right and the left. Research has found that the left knee is most often injured in alpine skiing1. Therefore it is important to compare the strength of your right and left legs to get the most out of your workouts. (more…)
Winter Injury Prevention: Alpine Skiing, Nordic Skiing, & Snowboarding: Part 1
At Excel Physical Therapy, winter is often our busiest time of year; and with good reason, many of us choose to live here for our winter pursuits of skiing and snowboarding. Unfortunately these sports have a high injury rate and can lead to serous injuries resulting in the need for surgery and extensive rehabilitation. While one cannot completely prevent injuries in skiing and snowboarding, your risk can be reduced by following injury prevention guidelines. This series of blogs will focus on injuries and their prevention for alpine skiing, snowboarding, and Nordic skiing.
Here are the links to the injury prevention handouts and resources from Excel Physical Therapy’s Community Education Series Fall 2013 Seminar “Why Do Kids Get Injured? A Youth Sports Injury Seminar for Parents, Coaches and Athletes Ages 18 & Under”
For additional information, please contact Jason Lunden, DPT, SCS at 406.556.0562 or by email: jason “at” excelptmt.com
Youth Sports Handouts:
Youth Sports Web Resources:
Community Education Seminar ~ free and open to the public
“Injury Prevention for Runners” Seminar presented by Excel Physical Therapy’s Jason Lunden, DPT, SCS
Friday May 17, 2013 6:00-7:30pm
Bozeman Library Large Community Room
Special guests Casey Jermyn of Bozeman Running Company and Damian Stoy of Wholistic Running
Cool Giveaways! Pair of Running Shoes and a Shoe Fitting from BRC / Free private lesson with Damian Stoy of Wholistic Running / Chi Running Book / Excel PT Stainless Coffee Tumblers with Free Coffee
- Learn how to recognize the Top 5 running injury symptoms including IT Band syndrome and shin splints.
- Discover how to self-treat a running injury.
- Learn to perform strengthening and stretching exercises designed to prevent the development of running injuries.
- Casey Jermyn of Bozeman Running Co. will present on what’s new in footwear & footwear selection.
- Damian Stoy of Wholistic Running will discuss tips to reduce injuries with proper running techniques.
Jason Lunden, DPT, SCS specializes in the rehabilitation and prevention of sports-related injuries, with a particular interest in the biomechanics of sporting activities – running, cycling, skiing, snowboarding and overhead athletics. He has published on the topic of shoulder biomechanics and the rehabilitation of knee injuries and has a strong commitment to educating others. Jason serves as a physical therapist for the US Snowboarding and US Freeskiing teams and is a frequent, well-received local and national presenter on the topics of sports rehabilitation and injury prevention. He is a recent recipient of the New Horizon Award from the American Physical Therapy Association.
Jason received his Doctor of Physical Therapy degree from the University of Minnesota, where he was the recipient of the Gary L. Soderberg DPT Visionary Award, the Mary A. McEvoy Award for Public Engagement and Leadership, the MN APTA Outstanding Physical Therapy Student Award, and the President’s Student Leadership and Service Award. He received a Masters of Arts in Cell and Molecular Biology from St. Cloud State University and Bachelors of Arts from St. Olaf College. Jason also received specialized training through the Minnesota Sports Medicine Sports Physical Therapy Residency, and received his board certification as a Sports Physical Therapy Clinical Specialist through the American Physical Therapy Association. He has also served as a faculty member for the Fairview Sports Physical Therapy Residency Program.
Jason is an avid snowboarder, cyclist, runner, and Nordic skier, and he enjoys spending his time outdoors with his family.
- Article by: MARLYNN MARCHIONE , Associated Press
- Updated: March 19, 2013 – 11:52 AM
- Published in the Minneapolis Star Tribune
You might not want to rush into knee surgery. Physical therapy can be just as good for a common injury and at far less cost and risk, the most rigorous study to compare these treatments concludes.
Therapy didn’t always help and some people wound up having surgery for the problem, called a torn meniscus. But those who stuck with therapy had improved as much six months and one year later as those who were given arthroscopic surgery right away, researchers found.
“Both are very good choices. It would be quite reasonable to try physical therapy first because the chances are quite good that you’ll do quite well,” said one study leader, Dr. Jeffrey Katz, a joint specialist at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School.
He was to discuss the study Tuesday at an American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons conference in Chicago. Results were published online by the New England Journal of Medicine.
A meniscus is one of the crescent-shaped cartilage discs that cushion the knee. About one-third of people over 50 have a tear in one, and arthritis makes this more likely. Usually the tear doesn’t cause symptoms but it can be painful.
When that happens, it’s tough to tell if the pain is from the tear or the arthritis — or whether surgery is needed or will help. Nearly half a million knee surgeries for a torn meniscus are done each year in the U.S.
The new federally funded study compared surgery with a less drastic option. Researchers at seven major universities and orthopedic surgery centers around the U.S. assigned 351 people with arthritis and meniscus tears to get either surgery or physical therapy. The therapy was nine sessions on average plus exercises to do at home, which experts say is key to success.
After six months, both groups had similar rates of functional improvement. Pain scores also were similar.
Thirty percent of patients assigned to physical therapy wound up having surgery before the six months was up, often because they felt therapy wasn’t helping them. Yet they ended up the same as those who got surgery right away, as well as the rest of the physical therapy group who stuck with it and avoided having an operation.
“There are patients who would like to get better in a `fix me’ approach” and surgery may be best for them, said Elena Losina, another study leader from Brigham and Women’s Hospital.
However, an Australian preventive medicine expert contends that the study’s results should change practice. Therapy “is a reasonable first strategy, with surgery reserved for the minority who don’t have improvement,” Rachelle Buchbinder of Monash University in Melbourne wrote in a commentary in the medical journal.
As it is now, “millions of people are being exposed to potential risks associated with a treatment that may or may not offer specific benefit, and the costs are substantial,” she wrote.
Surgery costs about $5,000, compared with $1,000 to $2,000 for a typical course of physical therapy, Katz said.
One study participant — Bob O’Keefe, 68, of suburban Boston — was glad to avoid surgery for his meniscus injury three years ago.
“I felt better within two weeks” on physical therapy, he said. “My knee is virtually normal today” and he still does the recommended exercises several times a week.
Robert Dvorkin had both treatments for injuries on each knee several years apart. Dvorkin, 56, director of operations at the Coalition for the Homeless in New York City, had surgery followed by physical therapy for a tear in his right knee and said it was months before he felt no pain.
Then several years ago he hurt his left knee while exercising. “I had been doing some stretching and doing some push-ups and I just felt it go `pop.'” he recalls. “I was limping, it was extremely painful.”
An imaging test showed a less severe tear and a different surgeon recommended physical therapy. Dvorkin said it worked like a charm — he avoided surgery and recovered faster than from his first injury. The treatment involved two to three hour-long sessions a week, including strengthening exercises, balancing and massage. He said the sessions weren’t that painful and his knee felt better after each one.
“Within a month I was healed,” Dvorkin said. “I was completely back to normal.”
AP Medical Writer Lindsey Tanner in Chicago contributed to this report.
Marilynn Marchione can be followed on Twitter at http://twitter.com/MMarchioneAP
Lindsey Tanner can be followed on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/LindseyTanner
A collaborative class offering from:
“Ski/Ride Strong: An ACL/Knee Injury Prevention & Performance Program”
October 11 – November 17, 2011
Tuesdays & Thursdays 6:30-7:30pm
at HealthBalance, 2030 Stadium Drive, Bozeman
12 evening sessions ~ Cost: $300
Class Size is Limited to 15 Participants
This 12 session program is aimed at decreasing the incidence of skier/snowboarder injuries and improving sport performance. Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) injuries of the knee are relatively common in skiing. In addition to putting you out for the season, they are costly: the cost of an ACL injury per athlete is approximately $17,000 (including surgery and rehabilitation).
Injury prevention programs focusing on strengthening, agility, jumping and landing, all with the emphasis on learning proper technique, have been shown to be effective in reducing non-contact ACL injuries.
Prevent costly common lower extremity injuries in skiing & snowboarding while improving your skiing/snowboarding performance. This comprehensive program will help you learn how to cut, pivot, jump and land with proper technique utilizing the latest sports medicine research on injury prevention to keep you on the mountain as well as the latest human performance equipment to track your improvement.
Under the direction of Excel Physical Therapy’s sports physical therapist, Jason Lunden, DPT, SCS and HealthBalance’s exercise physiologist, Eddie Davila, MS, HFS, you will receive advanced sports-oriented training to improve your skiing/snowboarding strength, endurance, agility, coordination, and speed.
Hurry! Register by October 4th
Space limited to the first 15 registrants
Contact HealthBalance @ 406.922.2078 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Knee injuries, more specifically Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) tears, are much less common in snowboarding than in alpine skiing. However, an ACL injury is a season-ending injury and the most common injury requiring surgery in snowboarding. ACL injuries are more prevalent in advanced/expert level snowboarders and are most often the result of a fall after a jump. The mechanism of injury for ACL tears in snowboarding is different from alpine skiing. ACL tears in snowboarding are thought to be due to a “quadriceps induced” injury, where there is an imbalance between the quadriceps and hamstrings. This can occur when you land flat off of a jump without much of a bend in the knee. Therefore, properly scoping out the landing before hitting a jump or a cliff, as well as adding hamstring strengthening to your dry-land training can go a long ways in preventing ACL injuries in snowboarding. Additionally, undergoing jump and landing retraining with a licensed physical therapist can further prevent injury.
For additional ACL Injury Prevention Exercises, Click here: ski & snowboard ACL injury prevent exercises
"...I can't tell you how much better things have gotten for me...both for my knees, but almost more importantly, for my hip/piriformis. I am so psyched. Thanks a ton for all your help through this!! Now I'm hoping for snow and a good ski season!" --Bozeman PatientView more testimonials from Excel PT clients »