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Has Anyone Competed After Ruptured Patellar Tendon?

And come back to compete in strongman again??? This probably belongs in the injury forum, but since I want to be specific to strongman, I’m putting it here.

I am 31days post-surgery after a complete rupture. I had the version when my tendon rupture in the middle (doc said it looked like spaghetti), not torn off the bone. I know it will be a long slow recovery, but I really want to hear from someone who actually competed in strongman after this injury. I’m 43 years old also, so I don’t really have youth on my side.

@T3hPwnisher ruptured his ACL and a bunch of other stuff and competed/competes again.

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Not strongman specific, but lots of powerlifters have come back from patellas, so it can be done.

Somewhere in here Louie talks about returning to the gym after rupturing his patella tendon. He mentions pushing a wheel barrow, like a “crutch on wheels” at first. Also sled dragging to work your legs without being under the weight or bending the knees too much. Then box squatting to limit how far forward your knee goes when you squat, to take stress off the patella tendon.

Yup. ACL was ruptured and I am missing 20% of my meniscus. Also fractured the patella. Ligaments and bone rather than tendons, but it’s all recoverable.

Maybe not to 100%, but to something.

Thor ruptured his ACL when he was 21

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Mark Phillipi (of the Coan/Philipi Deadlift program) did 1 patella getting rolled over by a car. Then he came back and ruptured the other patella. He came back from that one too.

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I did both as well and I’m stronger than before even though they can get a little achy sometimes


My Dr said no PT unless I end up having ROM issues. I’m 7 weeks out and am having to scour YouTube for exercises and also make some up as I go. What are some good resources, programs, protocols, etc. to get me back to being able to compete in strongman again?

What do you mean by no PT?
I think that my kine was making me doing exercises like terminal knee extensions, leg presses and various balance exercises after 3-4 weeks, and I started doing legs on my own a bit before 3 months out.

I mean after thrne surgery

Literally I will not be seeing a PT at all according to my ortho. I just had my brace unlocked to bend it to 30 degrees after week 5 post-op and was zero weight bearing until then also. I’m 7.5 weeks now and am bending to almost 50 degrees and have ditched the walker (unless I’m outside on uneven terrain or snow/ice) and am walking unassisted. I’m doing leg raises, ankle pumps and squat holds to 30 degrees for exercises. I have noticed that people with the avulsion fracture (patellar tendon tears off of the bone) rehab sooner and a bit different (it seems anyway) that the version I have where my patellar tendon had to be sewn back together.

How did you rupture both of your patellar tendons?

Not the patellar tendons but the Anterior cruciate ligaments, which has a similar, although considered harder and longer recovery.

I did not do both at the same and it was playing us football. What I’ll tell you from my personal experience (because I didn’t act the same during each recovery) and some testimonies: move as much as you can. You’re still in a splint/cast? That’s way too long. Docs are really precautious but what will heal you is pain free movement. I advocate against running or leg extensions. Your ROM seems really limited! The kine were putting my leg in a painful machine that would bend my leg at a certain degree. Though I only gained more than 90° flexion years later after doing olifts stretches. I cannot say too much since it is not the same affliction. A quick search tells me that it’s like 6 months without lifting. Yeah it’s certainly less

Yeah, patellar tendon ruptures are on a completely different level of recovery than an ACL or any other knee injury. The consensus seems to be 12-18 month recovery time. I can’t find hardly anyone who has returned after a complete patellar tendon rupture in any sport. Victor Cruz tried to comeback and Jimmy Graham has come back but is a shell of his former self. Louie Simmons came back (34 minutes mark in above video) after taking 5 years off.

So I’m looking for people who have had my same injury and have come back to compete in strongman.

Figured I’d bump this for the OP’s peace of mind.

Zydrunas Savickas came back from a double patellar tendon rupture many years ago. He mentions it in this video.