SPD/flats post knee operation?

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  • SPD/flats post knee operation?
  • skybluestu
    Member

    Just about to go for a knee op to rebuild cruciate and repair torn cartiledge and was wondering if anyone had a similar experience. also wondering if I should stick to flats for a bit to keep movement free and without resistance in an off? Thoughts?

    Premier Icon wwaswas
    Subscriber

    I always found that with a fairly spikey set of flats and grippy soled shoes you get absolutely no ‘float’ at all whereas with crank bros (in my case) spd’s you get a fair amount of ‘side-to-side’ heel movement whilst pedalling.

    The strain on your knees with spd’s tends to come when unclipping rather than pedalling.

    I’d talk to your surgeon, explain the type of movement that spd unclipping is and ask what they think?

    Flats with no pins…

    …also no unpredictable riding surfaces. A.K.A. an exercise bike or similar.

    Good luck.

    legend
    Member

    +1 for the above.

    If it helps: if I ride for 3 hours (or whatever) on flats I can guarantee that my knees will ache for a day or two after. No issues at all if I do the same clipped in (i use Times, loads of float)

    I had an ACL reconstruction just over two years ago. I am now able to do everything I could before I tore the ligament in the first place, though it does still feel different. The rehab period is horrible, boring and hard work, but stick at it and you’ll reap the benefits. Ask loads of questions if you have any concerns, not everyone’s experience is straightforward.

    Speak to your surgeon about pedals. Mine suggested I stuck exclusively to flats for the first three months (and I wasn’t allowed off road either, so it was non-grippy pedals on a road bike) and then I went to SPDs (again, on the road bike, I’ve always used flats for MTB). The important thing is to comply with the surgeon’s protocol for recovery, and this will differ for each surgeon.

    Good luck, and if you ever want to chat about it feel free to drop me an email!

    Premier Icon chambo82
    Subscriber

    Yep I would 2nd Lewis, I’m now 11months since I had acl reconstructed and have just been to coedy with crank brothers clip ins with no pain whatsoever, 1thing I have noticed though is the hamstring the surgeon took the graft from is noticeably different!!! I was on exercise bike the day after op with the physio and on road cycling after 3months, but was told not to use clip ins till at least 10months!! Mostly pain free now except a bit of scar tissue catching but have been assured that will go in time so can’t argue with that plus have recently started playing squash!!! Anyway any advice or chat just send me message or email chambo82@hotmail.co.uk
    Regards
    Mark

    Shandy
    Member

    Eventually, a bit of both is the best way to keep the knee strong.

    On clips the danger is not being able to get out of them in time, or damaging yourself getting out. The advantage is that pedalling smoothly on clips will activate all the muscles in your legs, and help work out any flat spots or imbalances in your pedal stroke.

    Flats are the other side of the coin, you can get a foot out whenever you need to but you will inevitably develop some imbalance. I prefer flats for most of the mountain biking I do. I had my op 3 or 4 years ago and I’m in the gym twice a week doing specific training. I will still notice an imbalance working itself out if I go back to clips after a couple of weeks only riding flats.

    skybluestu
    Member

    All, many thanks for your encouraging experiences. Will no doubt be in touch once operation is done. I currently ride crank bros so will stick with them when the time comes to get back on the bike!

    Get yourself along to whatever knee class the local hospital does. The physios there will sort you out.

    Premier Icon 16stonepig
    Subscriber

    I would say that the cartilage damage is the more important aspect here. (Not a doctor). The ACL should be able to recover completely, but the cartilage will not. When I dun my knee, the surgeon warned me against putting too much rotation into the knee while under load. Since then, I’ve been using Time pedals, which have a little float, with no problems, and sometimes flats.

    The most important thing to do is get blenty of BALANCED strength into the knee so that you naturally keep it in line.

    Shandy
    Member

    You might want to invest in a cryocuff – they are expensive but they’re really good for icing the knee after the operation and during rehab.

    Premier Icon 16stonepig
    Subscriber

    You might want to invest in a cryocuff – they are expensive but they’re really good for icing the knee after the operation and during rehab.

    Oh yeah, I had one of those hooked up to me after my op. I hated it. My favourite of the various appliances I was hooked up to was the PCA machine 🙂

    Premier Icon craigrogerson
    Subscriber

    Had two ACL reconstructions on the same knee. Now prepairing for 3rd ( bit more complicated than first two )
    knee surgeon and physio advised being clipped in is favourable so the hip/knee/ankle track properly to avoid more damage to the joint . I use flats when i go to places i lack confidence or places i know i have a good chance of hopping off !!!! but in the main i ride clipped in 90 % of the time . I think the cryocuffs are great personally it worked really well for me when the 2nd damaged graft came out last year . The other thing which the physio pointed out is the seat height is critical too low and it can damage an unstable knee, took me a while to get that right.

    All the best skybluestu

    Premier Icon Northwind
    Subscriber

    After I did my ACL, I was told flat out by my sports physio not to use clipless pedals (or skis, but that wasn’t so relevant) But ymmv of course, doesn’t follow you’ll be the same.

    coatesy
    Member

    Also, try looking into Speedplay Frog pedals, huge amounts of rotational float, and no resistance when unclipping.Couple that with greaseports, cartridge/needle roller bearings and you may never want anything else.

    Ive had three acl reconstructions to my right knee and numerous clean outs and scopes and torn my pcl and now have torn my acl again and one of my quads off the bone in the same knee tried flats once but found that there was far too much movement causing all sorts of pain.Ive been using shimano xtr pedals constantly with no pain.I think the most pain i used to get was caused by seatpost height that is too low. Good luck with youre opp try both sorts to see which suits you best.

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