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Adaptive Cycling: Handcycles, Amputee Adaptation, Visual Impairment, and Other Needs Have a need for adaptive equipment to ride to compensate for a disability or loss of limb or function? This area is for discussion among those of us in the cycling world that are coming back from traumatic circumstances and tell the world, "No, you are not going to beat me down!"

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Old 04-11-13, 12:36 AM   #1
centralks
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how long before you tried riding

As I sit here bored and anticipating getting my first leg next week I thought I would ask any of you who have lost a leg how long after you 'got back on your feet' did you wait before trying to ride? I already had s530s on my road bike and shoes so that's lucky and I am gonna buy dual release cleats for the left shoe at least friday. My pt guy and my prosthetist both knew what spd shoes were already cause they ride too, lucky there too
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Old 04-14-13, 06:19 PM   #2
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It took me a bit over a year, although I had a lot of other traumatic damage. I didn't actually walk unassisted for the first several months.

I would highly suggest that you take the time to get used to your device and the issues inherent with being an amputee. There are care and maintenance items pertaining to your leg and skin that you cannot possibly anticipate until you experience it.
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Old 04-24-13, 12:38 AM   #3
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I got my leg monday and it was both sobering and encouraging. My guy made my socket on the small size so I have been using my 3 mil liner and socks and a sleeve to walk a little in the house. Should be able to wear the six mil with the pin soon. I am encouraged because walking is not so hard and it should only get easier and sobered because I never realized the difference between walking on a smooth level surface and doing all the other things that just happened when I had both legs. I reckon I will know when the time to try is right but its not gonna be until I feel pretty comfortable on my new leg. I am sure that I could just go now and make it work but I guess I woudnt know if something was wrong or how to protect myself if something went wrong. I still haven had my fall from riding clipless so now I will be experiencing that as an amputee when it comes. I am still positive and understand your advice and will heed it both concerning my ability to use my leg first and having confidence in the care of my leg (what's left of it). Baby steps, but a baby step is still a step
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Old 04-27-13, 08:39 PM   #4
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When I got amputated as a child it was at least 8 months before I could bike. My family was living in the U.K., and the temporary first limbs they made then had a thigh corset and a metal frame where the knee locked for walking. I had to use the temporary for months too long because there was a strike by the prosthetic technicians. Getting first permanent leg where I could bend my knee without pulling on a release moved from September to March. I rode my bike again a couple of months after the first permanent leg. I don't miss 1970-1971 at all :-)

For present day, I would recommend trying clipless pedals on a bike on a trainer, or a bike with SPDs in a gym before you go outdoors. If you are getting physical therapy, they should have an exercise bike there. You can always put a pedal with toeclip on the prosthetic side the first time you ride with prosthesis.
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Old 05-03-13, 01:10 AM   #5
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stubborn

I had a few really good days with my leg and decided to do some testing with the bike. I checked range of motion propped up in a corner pedaling backwards and checked that I could unclip. Then I rode around the block three times with some stop/start practice; all of that went well and I waited a day or two to check for problems with my leg. Since then I have done two very short rides to see how I hold up and to look for problems with my skin. The last nine weeks have led me to believe that I am perhaps the MOST stubborn person I know. I am being as careful as I can stand to be while doing whatever I want until my leg says to stop. I have been on a walmart cheapy with lots of hand me down parts from my other two bikes; its hard to describe how great I feel after riding that thing. I have some friends/family that didn't ride with me before and said it was because they didn't think they could keep up (an excuse) so now I can maybe tease then into a few short rides. Cycling is good for the body and soul so why not use my accident to help them? To 'one leg less': I feel really comfortable on my new leg and managed to keep some of my fitness, however I am truly fearful off overuse type injuries.
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Old 05-03-13, 01:18 AM   #6
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Awesome. I'm sure it's nice to be riding again.
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Old 05-29-13, 11:24 PM   #7
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improvement

I got some ebay used spd pedals in and got to play on the road bike again the last few days. I did a little sprint today and came out of the saddle without thinking and it worked and I almost giggled. I had tried doing it before limb and that's something I liked to do before but it didn't really work on one leg on the town bike. This was nice and I held 25-26 for 1/2 mile. That was fun but not near where I was before and didn't really recover like I could 3 months ago. I am back to being comfortable on my bike again. The couple friends that I have got to go with me can't keep up going all out while I warm up (a statement about my friends/coworkers more than me) and I have had fun. Of everything, riding is the one that feels closest to before.
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Old 05-31-13, 05:37 AM   #8
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I have found that walking requires more of me than riding a bike. With that said, it took some adjustment to the device, and my own processes before I came to that realization. I would say the biggest issue for me was rubbing on the back of the knee. My first couple of years were punctuated by severe skin lesions, ingrown hairs, rub issues, etc. some of which I still deal with today albeit a bit more familiar with said issues. For me, I noted a serious increase in the toughness and lack of lesions after that second year and was really able to pour on some power at that time.
Standing in the saddle is still a bit scary and I have a hard time with my cadence pulling over the top. Beyond that, I just leave my prosthetic clipped in the entire ride. It doesn't hurt that I CAN'T unclip without my other foot on the ground...once again it's what you get used to.

Best of luck and congrats on your riding.
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Old 06-08-13, 07:02 PM   #9
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first fall

I hadn't been really scared to stand and pedal but tried it in a class at the ymca and came unclipped. No I worry a little about it. I got one of my 'in shape' friends to go one a cool down ride after I worked out today and had to really wait on him. It felt good to be decent at a physical activity, then we got back to his house and I unclipped my good leg and put it on the curb, then I pushed off to move some and over did it and fell down. That was my first clippless fall and I had a witness. Nothing hurt much but pride and really I just laugh every time I hurt myself anymore...which for some reason is way more often than before. I busted my thumb open on my socket bouncing the push mower to clear stuff that was clogging it a couple weeks ago, that's just an accident I never thought might happen...
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Old 06-10-13, 10:13 AM   #10
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holes?

Does anyone have problems with the sides of their socket wearing holes in their socks? Could I trim and hem a few to just below the trim line? Maybe put one wind of ace wrap between as a sacrifice? Ideas?
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Old 06-12-13, 05:45 AM   #11
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It is very common for the trimline to rub holes at the sides and at the back, particularly after you develop more pronounced tendons. You will find that the single ply socks are typically the only ones that wear through. If it is getting the 3 ply ones, ask your prosthesist to smooth the edge of the trimline a bit.
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Old 07-07-13, 12:35 AM   #12
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My leg guy got a friction sleeve and we are gonna put that between socket and socks. I will let you know how that goes once I try it.
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