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On avoiding knee injuries

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Matteo V
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Re: On avoiding knee injuries

Postby Matteo V » Sun Jul 11, 2021 6:25 pm

Herman wrote:
Sun Jul 11, 2021 6:07 pm
I can have a good jumping session on a TT where the muscles have been in control and then have a little slip on wet grass while relaxed and tweak a ligament. My strapless gear has to be well waxed etc to make sure I don’t slip.
Thanks Herman! That gets the conversation going as to how strapless can be a danger to your knees.

Slipping off the board is the key. And as you really start to push the limits strapless, you will even be trying to reconnect with the board after leaving it. This is mostly with kick flips and board offs and even tacks. And that's where one foot coming down on wax, but the other foot missing the board, can be just as bad as being strapped.

So yeah, strapless does present some injury potential, but only if you hold back more than even just being strapless naturally holds you back.
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Herman
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Re: On avoiding knee injuries

Postby Herman » Sun Jul 11, 2021 7:12 pm

If memory serves there is even a thread on here somewhere where somebody filmed themselves injuring a knee stepping off a strapless foil where the lift from the foil then torqued the knee in the leg that was still on the board but exiting sideways.

Might be worth the op looking into the benefits of tailgate swings after some recovery time.

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Re: On avoiding knee injuries

Postby Instalexandrem » Sun Jul 11, 2021 8:56 pm

sarc wrote:
Sun Jul 11, 2021 2:01 pm
Hey I just thought of another one (based on personal experience although I never had significant problems): think carefully about your straps angle ('duck'), try different angles and see how they feel. And try different settings for your footstraps : width, duck angle, very loose for surfboard, a little tighter for twintip. Very tight foostraps and wrong width / duck can put a lot of strain on your knees
So that is exactly what keeps me thinking these days: I had just installed new straps before that session and felt they were a bit board and a bit too « diverting » for my taste. Not sure how to investigate the safest angle / setting. I might ask my PT for an opinion.

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Re: On avoiding knee injuries

Postby Instalexandrem » Sun Jul 11, 2021 9:00 pm

Herman wrote:
Sun Jul 11, 2021 6:07 pm
You seem to be reporting meniscus damage rather than ligament damage and so hopefully it is not as bad as it first felt.
Yes you are on point. But this was a nasty tear, so I had the joy of an special surgery with a stitched meniscus with arthroscopy. Recovery is unpleasant.
Herman wrote:
Sun Jul 11, 2021 6:07 pm
Going back to riding, I would choose whatever you are most comfortable with and ride conservatively. The exception to that might be boots. But staying in control is the aim.

I would not recommend trying to restart strapless if it is not already familiar to you but you may wish to explore the benefits later.
I think this will be the way, but based on all other responses (thanks guys!) I might les Twin Tip and more foil / strapless. I’m 36, my knees are not going to become any younger :(

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Re: On avoiding knee injuries

Postby Instalexandrem » Sun Jul 11, 2021 9:02 pm

Ludmil wrote:
Sun Jul 11, 2021 4:10 pm
According to me, maybe you need deeper examination of your knees/legs (in case you haven't done it). Ligaments, muscle weaknesses etc., basically the reason which led to that injury
Yes 100%. It snapped in a way I didn’t expect it at all.

Strange that said, because I am an avid skier. Last winter I did 10-15 days on the snow, and I did a full week in Fuerteventura in March. My knees should have been in top condition.

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Re: On avoiding knee injuries

Postby edt » Mon Jul 12, 2021 4:04 am

I like what Matteo V said. Sometimes it's just not your day. If you can get injured folding your kite, then just don't worry about it too much. Ride as hard as you can and still be comfortable. Injuries tend to be the same amount beginner, intermediate, advanced, because everyone tends to ride at their skill level. As you get more experienced you push it more. Yes, you're able to avoid injury better, but you also risk more as you get more experience and more comfort in taking risks. That's not just true of kiting it's true of all sports. There are a couple of studies with skiing that show this, where beginners, intermediate and advanced have about the same rate of injuries, with the only thing that was correlated was that beginners got wrist injuries which advanced skiers never got. That's from bracing yourself when you fall. The same thing happens in kiteboarding by the way. Beginners will often break their ankles when they botch a jump because they always land feet first, and if there's a sandbar or the water is more shallow than they expect, they'll break their ankles, but advanced kiters never land feet first if they aren't absolutely sure if the water is deep, instead they will lean back and hit the water with their entire body. As for knees, just ride as hard as you feel comfortable doing. Unfortunately knee accidents are just part of the sport.

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Re: On avoiding knee injuries

Postby Herman » Mon Jul 12, 2021 7:44 am

Regarding strap position for TT:

I think your concerns regarding strap set up is perfectly valid. There are cycling stories of riders making minor adjustments to crank length, seat post…etc and then suffering knee injury. As far as TT goes I keep an old (and loved) board which has my datum setting.

Starting from scratch for TT I like the jump test for an indication of how much duck you should be using but I don’t think that this is the whole story. As I have aged I need to be able to twist my foot in the bed a little so that I can have a comfortable stance for just riding. My front foot uses all/more of the duck and rear foot ends up orthogonal. But of course, this is a personal thing which will be dependant on how your ankles/feet are bolted on. (When I walk I have zero duck or pigeon.)

At 36 you have loads of time left. When thinking about your new bindings it might be important to try and identify whether it was making the front foot uncomfortable (perhaps related to duck) or rear (perhaps related to twist ability/bed shape and tightness). Width of stance is also important and particularly relates to the load on medial ligaments when the legas are straighted imho.

I probably don’t need to emphasise that this is all varies with the individual but I suspect it gets more important to get right and find binding that suit as your body ages. Once experienced, If it feels uncomfortable riding, something is not right and needs changing and it is not wise to try to put up with it imho.

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Re: On avoiding knee injuries

Postby Havre » Mon Jul 12, 2021 12:30 pm

As others have mentioned, or at least alluded to, I wouldn't read too much into one incident. Sample size 1.

I tore my ACL and had meniscus damage playing football years ago. Recovered and continued to play football - never had an issue since.

I'm also a cyclist and it is true as Herman says that small adjustments might make a huge difference, but I would argue that is different. The type of pain/injuries you typically "fix" when adjusting your riding position on a bike are injuries you get over time by because you are 0.1% off. Something you won't notice for the first hour, but which might become a big problem after 3000 hours in that position. I cannot rule out that the injury you got was the consequence of the same kind of unfortunate "load" on your knees, but it seems unlikely to me.

For me personally kiting is not especially tough on my knees. I could see it being different for people jumping 20m+ consistently, where the impact of landings might either due to a bad landing or wear due to high volume become an issue. For the vast majority of kiters being 36 I would argue, kind of anecdotally of course, your body should be more than capable of dealing with the strain it puts you under. Unless you got some anatomical issue that means you are more likely than a "normal" person to injure your meniscus in certain situations. That I don't think you will know before you injure yourself again unfortunately.

As for trying to prevent the issue my recommendation would be to focus on strengthening your legs, balance etc. rather than focusing on adjusting your stands etc. Squats, yoga etc. I can't help being surprised by how weak I get myself if I stop doing certain exercises (e.g. during summer I ride my bike more and do less for example squats - I could easily lose 50% of my max strength during the summer - so weights I would use early in my warm up suddenly becomes my max at my weakest - probably increasing my risk of getting injured - and even at my weakest I'm still stronger than many/most who do not for example do squats at all - or at least some kind of strength exercises for legs).

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Re: On avoiding knee injuries

Postby JakeFarley » Mon Jul 12, 2021 3:54 pm

One thing is to warm up before going out, doing any tricks, jumping, etc. I usually make several easy runs and work my way up before jumping. Also, when I get tired during a session, I try not to push myself. If I fail once or twice, I know it's time to come in.


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