T Nation

ACL Gone... Experiences of Rehab and Exercise Suggestions

Hey, this is the first time I’ve posted a topic here…

Recently I got a hard tackle in rugby and damaged my right knee quite severely, tearing my ACL, MCL and damaging the meniscus. I’ve had knee surgery (just cartilage trimming) on my left knee before, thanks to wear and tear from Tae Kwon Do (I’m only 20. Ow). I’ve decided to leave off rugby now.

Basically, I’ve got to wait until at least June until there’s a space for me to have my ACL rebuilt. I haven’t really been set anything specific by the surgeon to do in that time, just some tensing exercises and stretching. I do know that after the op I can expect my muscle to waste quickly (I know a few people who have had the same thing).

I’ve never really had the discipline to get into weight training proper before, there were too many other things, although I had an interest, reading this site amongst other things. But now I can 't do martial arts (or rugby, thank god), I’m serious about doing as much as I can.

Has anyone else had anything similar to their knees? Could anyone give me advice on a weights/diet plan to follow? I’m at university, and have limited access to a gym, (the university one is miles away and expensive) although we do have a small one where I live. My current aims are to build up the muscles in my legs to compensate, temporarily, for the imbalances there, as well as to hopefully not continue getting fatter from not doing as much as I used to. In fact, looking good instead of beery…

I know I can’t run or twist, but apart from that (and leg extensions) I think I’m ok. I’ve been doing some tentative light deadlifting over the past few days and that feels OK.

I appreciate all your time… And I’ll post gruesome photos when I get the op :wink: