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Injuries and Training/Testing
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Author Topic: Injuries and Training/Testing  (Read 1375 times)
Steven Vance
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« on: January 13, 2014, 05:07:18 AM »

This was a second topic both Guru Art and Guru Aric asked me to start.  Back in early December, while on vacation, I injured my right knee.  Specifically, I damaged my right MCL ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Medial_collateral_ligament ).  Sadly, I cannot report that this was while skiing a 14,000-foot mountain or surfing 30-foot waves in Hawaii.  It seems to have been, rather, the result of gradual damage accumulated while driving the 1,100 miles between our home, and my mother's.

Complications, in my case, are that my lower limbs took some lasting damage while I was in the military; I have a condition a PT named "generalized ligamentous laxity" (I have "loose" ligaments); and I am 48 now, so I don't heal quite so fast anymore.  

There was definitely some inflammation present.  I also saw some bruising below and behind the ligament, which would tend to indicate there was some tearing of the ligament.  I was concerned, at one point, that I might have surgery in my future, but it is improving now, albeit slowly.  The turning point seemed to be when my wife did some energetic healing on it one night.  Thankfully, she has some capabilites in that realm.  We've had a lot of things going on, however, including caring for a (now adult) former foster daughter, who is very sick, and so my wife doesn't always have the juice to do much right now.

I have been avoiding stairs, and other high-impact activities, as much as possible.  I've been wearing a brace or wrapping it quite a bit of the time.  Recent readings on the treatment of sports injuries have led me to avoid both ice and anti-inflammatories (since inflammation is actually a part of the body's natural healing process).  When I have time off the next couple of days, I will find that article and post it here on the forum.  

Money has also been an issue, so the offer of free testing this month for the Distance Training Program caught my interest.  I have to balance the desire to test with the need to not injure myself more.  Guru Art assured me that the gurus would be aware of my injury and that would be taken into account for whatever tests I submit, which is awesome.

This was what I wrote to him with this morning, to which he responded with the request that I start this post...
  
My MCL injury seems to be showing slow improvement.  I tried the first deep position in the stream-side set, the depok stance(can't remember the name right now), kinda' slowly and carefully, and was able to go fairly deep without pain.  I was able to keep the entire leg, knee included, in a single diagonal(?) plane.  What seems to be more challenging/painful for me is anything that causes rotational force in the structure of my knee.  Which is frustrating, because I normally do have a lot of twist/gelek in my movement, from the ground up.  I'll know more as I spend some serious time on things Mon/Tue.  I suspect any kind of dramatic jumping might not be such a happy thing...I might have to opt for gliding...lol.

As I indicated, I seem to do decently when I keep the whole leg in a uniform plane.  Rotational movement in the knee, itself, especially with weight on the joint, seems to be the most distressing.  I'm sure I'll be testing barefoot, at least for most of it, as the added traction of my shoes seems to work against me in this.

Any feedback is welcome.  If others are dealing with injuries, feel free to bring it up.  I know I'm not the only medical person on the forum.  Let's help each other out with these things.
« Last Edit: January 13, 2014, 05:09:17 AM by Steven Vance » Logged
Steve
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« Reply #1 on: January 31, 2014, 04:01:15 PM »

Yes Steven, I can relate.

Most of my training has been accompanied by injuries since my introduction to silat, then kuntao; but actually had it's genesis much earlier. My first major injury was caused by a trampoline accident as a child. My lower spine remained in a constant state of pain from the time I was Eight or so until I came off my motorcycle at 95 out by Indio, California and in addition to all the flesh the asphalt ripped off, my upper spine and neck suffered some pretty intense damage. Fortunately, my healing process led me to spring-board diving ~ and the stretching for the pike position started healing both injuries as the sun repaired my torn and tattered flesh.

Tae Kwon Do stretches damaged the tendons in my legs, but silat began the healing process ~ simply by ceasing the silly stretches and kuntao began re-strengthening the tendons with the horse-stance training.

Willem was practicing his De Mak on me though, so when my arm blew up larger than my leg I finally checked into the emergency room and was immediately hospitalized with what they termed a sub-clavial venal thrombosis and was told that I could not live more than a few days without immediate surgery and was put on an IV cumadin drip. I decided to go home to die and my friend Bill Chang and his wife Lisa came to see me. Sifu Chang (U Un Surya) offered to treat me and during the process taught me many things that have been an immeasurable blessing in my life and health.  Although it took many years to heal from that deliberate damage, the Internal teachings of Sifu Chang has made me stronger in my mid-sixties than I was in my youth.

When Randall, Phillip, Dave and I went to Pak Vic's World-wide Challenge in 1981 to introduce Willem's Kun Lun Pai style to the world, I had the opportunity to fight the hugest human I have ever seen. Pak Vic claimed he was Six foot nine and weighed 490 pounds ~ the picture George Morin took of the fight made me look like a child in front of him. Although I won, my leg was so severely damaged that I had to use a cane for about five years; until my Spyderco odyssey brought a chiropractor into my life up in the Twin-Cities during the Minnesota State Fair. Once he re-aligned the damaged leg, a few years of filming in a horse-stance had me walking without a cane. You'll notice the low camera angles in many of my films.

Concomitantly, I was traveling during all this time ~ making my living as a photographer or salesman, or simply on my motorcycles looking for my head. Although I probably clocked a well over a million miles on motorcycles, it was the cars that exacerbated most of my chronic injuries. Although it was much more fun to apply the constant training concept to motorcycle travel, I developed a constant workout for cars as well and found that breath-training and flexing and working my legs and torso constantly enhanced blood flow and increased alertness and mental acuity as well as healing my spine and keeping my legs flexible and strong. One of these days, when I get close to a car, I'll endeavour to film a bit of a travel workout in addition to the Office WorkOut I have on my agenda for those stuck in office work.

Injuries present training opportunities we would not think to ask for and help us to develop in ways we couldn't imagine. As YahSheua said, "In this world you will have tribulations, but be of good cheer for I have overcome the world!" To the "over comer" goes the prize.

Hang tough and continue to train.

In His Peace,
Steve
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Constant training is the key to success in the Martial LifeStyle of American KunTao Silat ~ may YHVH richly bless all who diligently pursue this journey.
Steven Vance
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« Reply #2 on: February 01, 2014, 04:59:32 AM »

Thank you, for the encouragement.  That list makes mine seem pretty mild by comparison. 

I'm hoping that the internal work, over time, will help the damage that's been done to my lower legs/feet by my years in the military. 

My knee seems to finally be making some decent progress.  I was able to work with the streamside set for a time yesterday, with fairly deep stances, until my whole body was a bit shaky.  It felt "good", whereas my attempts earlier in the month mostly met with that feeling of "wrongness", where it felt like my body was warning me off from further injury, if that makes any sense?  I believe the eagle posture will be especially helpful in strengthening my knee.  While I haven't yet worked up the courage to try much in the way of a siloh, the main accomodation I am making right now for my (right) knee and (left) foot (stress reactions & possible stress fractures) is that I am not jumping yet.  I am working the set both as a moving form, and as a series of static postures a la zhan zhuang.  Proper breathing, tip of the tongue on the roof of my mouth, etc.  It has been almost 12 hours since, and I'm just a bit stiff.  The knee isn't complaining, really...*fingers crossed*

I'd love to see the car and office workouts.  I work in an office, and I've never been a great distance driver.  I'm looking for ways, now that my injuries are improving and my options are broadening, to optimize my time at work for kuntao silat.

Peace,

Steven




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