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Old 09-05-08, 03:44 AM   #1
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Physical Therapy 101?

Physical Therapy 101? :

Iím a sometimes road cyclist and just turned 70 last month. I live in southeastern PA. Last month I bought a new 2009 Trek 7100 hybrid and was fitted at a full-service bike shop.

Over the years Iíve had recurring pain in both knees, especially the left that go back to a cycling overuse episode in the late 1980s . Itís usually dull, achy stuff but itís enough to keep me out of the saddle for extended periods out of concern of making the situation worse. In late 2006 I started an at-home Schwinn 113 exercise bike program and gradually increased the resistance and duration. Trouble was (1) I rarely take rest days and (2) I was also increasing my daily walking routine (10,000+ steps). By the end of the year I passed the threshold and had to stand down due to the now familiar knee symptoms. Perhaps if I had paced myself better Ö perhaps indoor cycling one day Ö walking more the next Ö with intermittent rest days Ö I might have strengthened my knees successfully.

So I feel it may be time to have them looked at Ö and corrected Ö professionally.

Whatís the procedure here? Can I go directly to a physical therapist (PT)? Or must I: (1) go to my family doctor Ö (2) have him refer me to an orthopedist Ö (3) have him refer me to a physical therapist. Whatís the drill?

Iím hoping to get back in the saddle to enjoy some flat autumn (2008) (paved) rail-trail riding before winter sets in. Or am I realistically looking at essentially a winter rehab and back on the road in spring 2009? Gasp!

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Old 09-05-08, 04:30 AM   #2
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Sorry to hear of the knee problems. I suspect the specific procedure is dependent on the type of medical insurance you have. Keep in mind that physical therapy may or may not be the first step in helping your condition. Next weekend my older brother is having two knee replacements, and his doctor promises him cycling will be much easier and more enjoyable in about six months.
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