Tennis: the sport for a lifetime?

Discussion in 'Health & Fitness' started by danix, Jun 1, 2010.

  1. danix

    danix Semi-Pro

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    Notice the question mark.
    Feeling a little pissed off and sorry for myself right now.
    I've been playing since roughly the age of 12.
    Now, at age 39, I've been through:
    - knee scoping. they found cartilage loss, and did microfractures to help
    - shoulder scoping. Debur, debride, Mumford. Worked great for a few months and then a different part of the shoulder started hurting. We won't talk about the left shoulder I tore when recovering from surgery on the right side due to a bicycle accident...

    Now my knee is acting up again, and I know the next step is an ACI procedure (autologous cartilege injection, aka Carticel). I'm willing to deal with the 6 months of rehab, but according to their site, patients who have it, have a 49% rate of going under the knife again.

    I have to start asking myself - is it time to give up competitive tennis? I can't imagine not playing tennis with the mindset that I want to win, and improve, playing tournaments, leagues, whatever. I see 60, 70, 85 year old men and women playing, and I want that to be me.

    Obviously I have to have some conversations with my ortho, but if you've been through this, or are going through it, feel free to chime in.
     
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  2. El Diablo

    El Diablo Hall of Fame

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    Time to challenge yourself with something else, be it swimming, billiards, tournament bridge, chess, tai chi, anything but repetitive trauma. If you keep up what you're doing now, arthritis will complicate the problems you already have in those joints.
     
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  3. scotus

    scotus Legend

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    Sorry to hear that. Best wishes on your recovery.

    But I agree with you that when we say that tennis is a sport for a lifetime, we should add a little footnote:

    * Only if you avoid hard surfaces, and stiff racquets and strings.
     
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  4. ab70

    ab70 New User

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    the same story here volleyball player and then converted to tennis after college... same age... 2 shoulder scopes in last 18 month... SLAP on the right, DCR and clean up on the left... Good enough to play 3.5 doubles to limit serving for 2-3 weeks. I am taking for what it is worth as I can't imagine getting back to 4.0-4.5 singles tournaments and hitting 8-10 hours a week...

    Curious what other part of your shoulder hurting after mumford? Still having on and and off issues with my left one that I cleaned up over new years... My 2hbh was my best shot... sucks...
     
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  5. HookEmJeff

    HookEmJeff Semi-Pro

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    I would say if you're 3.5 and under...it's probably a lot easier to play tennis for longer.

    The higher up the chain you go and the more athletic and physically demanding the points, it's obvious more is asked of your body.

    If you started young and are playing the bulk of your tennis on hard courts to boot...I'd say it's NOT really a sport for a lifetime.

    Doesn't mean you shouldn't try, though!!!!


    Jeff
     
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  6. danix

    danix Semi-Pro

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    Thanks. I'm a 4.0, could probably be a 4.5 if my body cooperated, but oh well.
    ab70 - not really sure. It's definitely muscular, the mumford was just to give more clearance I think. They found little or no tearing at the time, and I rehabbed pretty quickly.

    The knee is giving me the most concern at the moment. ACI is described as a pretty painful procedure with a 6-8 week non-weight-bearing period plus 3-8 months recovery time. And with a sub 50% success rate?
     
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  7. tennisdad65

    tennisdad65 Hall of Fame

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    1) use a low powered very flexible racquet, great for your arms and control
    2) use full natural gut at low tensions, to give you power and great for your arms
    3) get the best shoes and insoles on the market
    4) play on clay or grass more..
    5) play more doubles, hit against the wall, ball machine , light rallying, drills etc.. i.e. have fun.. Playing competitive matches is very hard on the body..
    6) massage the major joints and muscles in your body daily like me :)
     
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  8. Fedace

    Fedace Banned

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    i have been only playing doubles for last 4 years and still i have foot injuries and knee problems. and i wear Best shoes in the market.
     
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  9. John55

    John55 New User

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    With a 49% chance of going back to surgery for your knee, it would be the most prudent choice to give up competitive tennis, or at the very least, give up singles competitive tennis. As much as you may like a particular sport, battling lifelong ailments as a result of the activity are certainly not worth it in my opinion.
     
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  10. Caloi

    Caloi Semi-Pro

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    I'm the same age as you...I feel your pain, literally. I've never had surgery but only because my insurance sucks and I am too damn cheap to do it.

    I've been through PT for my right shoulder and both wrists now. Last year my eye doctor took me out of contacts but I cheat and wear them for tennis. He said they were basically making me go blind.

    My knees are still fine (knock on wood) (No, seriously, I just knocked on wood laminate) but my hips get sore. I got a bulging disk last winter lifting some stuff around the house.........

    Right now my left wist is the biggest problem. It decided to act up totally opposite from my right wrist (unlar side). I'm doing everything I can, ice, heat, NSAID's, but with our short summers here in Caucasia I am NOT resting it now.

    I've wondered how much longer I can do this to my body.

    Pretty tough stuff for such a "sissy sport". ;)
     
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  11. charliefedererer

    charliefedererer Legend

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    It sounds like it would be really hard for you to give up tennis entirely, so I'm hoping you won't have to.

    But would an extended break help heal that knee without a need for the ACI procedure?

    Could a slow return, with greater emphasis on really building up the leg muscles off court, really help the knee?

    You aren't even an ounce overweight, are you?
     
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  12. danix

    danix Semi-Pro

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    I'm hoping I don't have to. If I have to give up playing USTA leagues and tournaments, I will at least continue to coach my daughters and wife, but that's not the same.

    The ACI is intended to replace cartilage that is missing in my knee. Rest may help, as would losing weight (I'm not really overweight but being leaner definitely helps your knees). Building up muscle helps prevent tears and other issues, but won't help with what is essentially a bone-on-bone problem.
     
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  13. John55

    John55 New User

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    How about switching just to competitive Doubles Matches only?

    Less running and shorter points.
     
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  14. jwbarrientos

    jwbarrientos Hall of Fame

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    the answer is yes If you got succeed avoiding injuries.
     
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  15. LuckyR

    LuckyR Legend

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    Well, if you have modern strokes and use the best of modern equipment, I would seriously consider moving to arm friendly equipment. Remember, there is not a ton of information on folks using the stuff long term, you are probably the canary in that coal mine and look at your recent experience.

    As to your legs you have a couple of options: play doubles, play on clay, play less competitively, use a brace (which can take you from being barely able to walk to playing like nothing is wrong).
     
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  16. chollyred

    chollyred Rookie

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    I asked a doctor buddy of mine "When are you too old to participate?" He replied "When it takes too long to recuperate."

    Due to knee issues, I rarely play singles anymore, but love good competitive doubles! The week before last, I played 5 sets on a Friday morning. It takes me about 3 days to recuperate (although my knees complain every time I go up or down stairs). I know I'll pay as I get older. I'm just hoping medical advances will out run my playing life. :)
     
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  17. BMC9670

    BMC9670 Hall of Fame

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    Can't say enough about Har-Tru on the body. Seek it out and play on it as much as possible. I notice a big difference in the feet, knees, hips, and back. Unfortunately, it doesn't help the shoulders. I'm 39 and 6 months post SLAP surgery - first major injury I've ever had. I hope it's a while before my next.

    Also, I already have an eye out for my kids (8 and 6). We are a tennis family but I watch their court time, play as much on clay as possible, teach them good warm up and technique, and have them play other sports. I want them to be able to play long into their lives and I already see 12 year old juniors with stress fractures and arm problems.
     
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  18. danix

    danix Semi-Pro

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    Clay would be great but here in Norcal, it's all hard court. I've actually tossed around the idea of moving to Florida or North Carolina if it would extend my playing career :)
     
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  19. FedererUberAlles

    FedererUberAlles Professional

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    wouldn't it be cheaper to build a claycourt or something?
     
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  20. danix

    danix Semi-Pro

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    Have you seen the price of land around here? :)
    Actually, it's a dream of mine to have my own court one day.
     
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  21. Frank Silbermann

    Frank Silbermann Professional

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    In Paul Metzler's book _Advanced_Tennis_ (written in the mid-1960s) he gave advice for playing people who use western grips saying (paraphrasing from memory), "Don't approach the net on anything he can get a good swing at. Whatever your western opponent does, hang in there. He might wilt in the second set, no matter how fiery he is in the first set. Using the western style takes a lot of energy."

    My speculations: The western style takes more out of your shoulder because you're swinging hard all of the time (because you can make the ball still go in) and it's harder on your legs because you have to squat down lower to retrieve the slices and because you have to squat down and push up with your legs even on moderate balls to generate heavy topspin. The two-handed backhand harder on all body parts except the elbow. Playing such people is harder on the body because you have to jump/split-step on every shot to retrieve those screamers.

    When tennis was described as a sport for a lifetime, it was back in the days when people still used continental and eastern-toward-continental styles. You would delicately stroke the ball, hoping to get close enough to the tiny sweet spot to maintain control, and if a club player could regularly hit three good ground strokes in a row he'd probably win the point due to his opponent's unforced errors, but western-grip players with big rackets can keep the point going indefinitely. Now that correct technique is no longer be competitive, it might be more difficult to continue into middle-age and beyond.
     
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2010
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  22. danix

    danix Semi-Pro

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    Interesting comments Frank. Yeah, I wonder how much the "modern game" is damaging our bodies...
     
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  23. bertrevert

    bertrevert Hall of Fame

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    The majority of cheap suburban courts in Australia are laid with artificial grass. Although it has been described as terrible by pro players it does have a few things going for it: you can slide on it. the ball stays fast on it, and it rewards a big serve (points are short).

    Now, every time I go play on hard court eg. an acrylic surface or concrete, it is noticeably very much tougher on the body, needing a much longer recovery, and also prone to give an injury. However I find it better fun to play on (more Western grip, bigger groundstrokes etc).

    Anyway, choose an easier surface. More doubles. Enjoy some social tennis. Pretty tough game to do all your life.

    ps. is there in some sense the idea that you are at a plateau of playing and don't want to go backwards or downwards? If so then there can really be nothing to trun back father time.
     
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  24. danix

    danix Semi-Pro

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    Well, sort of. At age 39, with 3 kids, the best I can hope for is to play 1-2x/week. It's hard to improve your level if that's all you do.
    Even if I wanted to play at a lower level, you can't drop to a lower league level without medical reason, and even then it's difficult to do. But no, I don't want to go backward or downward. I want to be that crafty old coot serving and volleying at age 60 or 65 :)

    Finding a different surface makes a lot of sense, but I think I would have to move to make that a reality.
     
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  25. markwillplay

    markwillplay Professional

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    I feel you bro. I am 40 and have always been ion excellent condition. I played a lot of tennis in my teens and early 20's then stopped. I got back into it about 4 years ago and played 4.0 tournaments and guys at my level many days a week. Well, I am having hip replacement surgery in 2 weeks. Had the hip scoped 6 months ago to no avail. There is no doubt that while my hips are genetically bad...tennis on hard courts..competitive tennis..training and being obsessed with it...definately sped up my joint deterioration. * can tell you this, after I have my hip (and possibly both) replaced...I will probably only play on clay and will not worry about playing 4.0 4.5 type tournaments. I probably can't anyway. I know another guy who has had one hip replaced in 2000 and one hip resurfaced and he can still play at that level but he is REALLY good and has a smooth game. He is a teaching pro.

    No doubt..modern competitive tennis on a hrd court will get you eventually. The sport is hard on joints (hard court). I played a very aggressive style too and would constantly be changing directions and moving forward....doesn't matter, hard courts will get you.
     
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  26. OldButGame

    OldButGame Hall of Fame

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    Ive been goin thru some of that same stuff lately,....and at 55,...i ask myself if its worth it......But then i figure.....ill know....cuz it wont be fun anymore....right now...despite it all....im havin a blast!!!!!!!!!....so ill do what it takes to stay with it....
     
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  27. ClubHoUno

    ClubHoUno Banned

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    I'm about your age soon :)

    Also played a lot in my teens, then took a break in my late 20's and then started again 4 years ago.

    My knees hurt, and I have to cut down on the number of times I play tennis a week - maximum 2 times a week now.

    You have to do certain things to be able to continue playing tennis in my view.

    Avoid hard courts - I'm serious AVOID HARD COURTS !! They are very tough on your legs and will destroy you in the long run. Find a place where they have clay courts. Continue on hard courts and you're done in 4-5 years time.

    Start playing doubles more, practice on the wall more often and just hit with your partners instead of playing actual matches. Matches are very tough on your body in the long run, so try to cut down on that.

    Think about the racquet you use, the strings and how you hit your shots.
    Do this to minimize the strain on your arms and body.

    Why are there so few clay courts in the US, when all you can find in Europe is clay courts ?

    Clay is sooo much cofter on your legs and body.
     
    #27
  28. EKnee08

    EKnee08 Professional

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    I completely agree with Club's comments. Dan, I have a very similar experience to you and Club but I am approaching 50. I also have been playing since 12. I learned old school tennis in the mid to late 70s at Ron Holmberg's tennis camp. I played high school tennis and took a break through college and law school to concentrate on academics but I could have played Division 3.
    After having a knee scoped in my mid 20s from basketball,while in the recovery room, my family was told my tennis days were over. Flashforward a year and after rehab and my ortho changed his tune and said I could play for the rest of my life.
    I picked the game up again with a vengenance in my late 20s but was at the 4.0 level until my mid 30s when i hooked up with a coach who modernized my technique and I rose to 5.0 and started playing skill-level and age tournaments.
    Let me emphasize that until my mid 30s I played on hard courts which probably took a major toll on my body. I then embraced har-tru and clay.

    As I incorporated the modern game and I got older, my body started to break down. At 39, I needed rotator cuff surgery. I cut down on my playing due to professional and family commitments and played 1-2 a week including an advanced league.
    At 45 I moved to the burbs. My community had beautiful har-tru courts and an advanced team that competed in the country club circuit. I started playing more often again. However, by 47 I needed microfracuture surgry on one knee which was arthritic and could probably use the same procedure on the other knee. However, my ortho said its not worth the time and effort to go thru it again.
    My ortho advised to only play on har-tru which I have been doing for years and only doubles and I will be fine for another 30 years.

    However, I now have a strained ligament in my index finger of my racquet hand which has kept me out almost 3 months.

    It sucks getting older!

    Regarding the 70 olds who play, many of them never competed at the highest levels. I play and hit with some 60-70 year olds who played pro or the highest level division 1 and they can't move to the ball very well even with knee and hip replacements. Although they can generate very good pace on the serve they double fault very often due to their mobility limitations.

    So don't go crazy, if you want to be able to play into your 70s nad enjoy yourself, it is time to start pacing yourself.

    Best of luck to you from a guy who is 10 years older with 10 years more wear and tear!
     
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  29. OldButGame

    OldButGame Hall of Fame

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    OK...an example of 'overdoing it'.......this spring i got playing soooooo intensely,...that i was playing nearly 6 out 7 days a week. After a few weeks of this,...i was playing a match....and in that last fateful match i actually stumbled and fell to the court going after balls. (i suspect fatigue showing on me). In the second fall i took i broke a bone (fibula) in my right leg. Been sitting out the last 5 weeks. i chalk this up to 1.using crosstrainers instead of respectable shoes,....and....2,...Not allowing myself to recover enough between matches,...and grinding myself down. The passion is great,..but i let it get the better of me.:(
     
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  30. new_tennis_player

    new_tennis_player Banned

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    My understanding is that microfracture requires 1 year of recovery time?

     
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  31. EKnee08

    EKnee08 Professional

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    Not the case. I was back on court in 6 months.

    I had my microfracture surgery at age 46 in July 2008. I ended all rehab by the beginning of December 2008. I could have started to play then but I was planning to go away with my family for Christmans and so decided to wait to go back on court until the beginnning of the new year in case of a setback so I would not ruin my vacation.

    I was back on court in January 2009 with the surgeon's permission and blessing with the unloader brace I had used to transition off of crutches over a 6 week period in the fall of 2008.

    I started off slowly over 4-6 weeks and played in a drill instruction group at my club. I took it easy and played smart and didn't go after tough balls. My mobility and quickness was not what it was before the surgery but this can be somewhat attributed to the unloader brace.
    However, after a month I was allowed to play with my patella stabilizer marshall style knee brace (I had used for years) when I was not playing very intensely. If I was playing more intensely, I played with the unloader brace for a time so as to keep myself out of trouble.

    Over a several month period, I transitioned completely off the unloader and had full mobility.

    When I came back to the same drill and play group in the fall of 2009, everyone was amazed at how much quicker I was. (This was probably more a matter of confidence as I moved more cautiously in the first few moths after returning to court.)
    Although, I have no limitations, I still play smarter now and don't go after some balls I can get to in order to hopefully ensure my longevity in the sport.
     
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  32. new_tennis_player

    new_tennis_player Banned

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    This is great news. I've heard stories about nba players who are basically out a year after micro-fracture. It still seems like you were in half rehab mode with low intensity play for half a year though, so still about a year before you're playing anywhere near full tilt. To me, that's acceptable.

    Did your insurance plan cover most of the costs?

    After an MRI, this may be my next step.

    You're giving us all hope!

     
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  33. BevelDevil

    BevelDevil Hall of Fame

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    What's your playing style? Perhaps you can make strategic changes (including possibly stroke changes) to your game to help preserve your body.
     
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  34. EKnee08

    EKnee08 Professional

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    You should take it one step at a time and hopefully you wouldn't need a microfracture.
    I could have it on my other knee but my ortho does not recommend it because of the recovery process and the fact I have a young family. He believes that if I take care of myself, I can play sports and never need a knee replacement, etc.

    If its a matter of missing the cartilage and having arthritic knees, your doc may even recommend the Sinvisc or other artificial knee fluid injections first. You may not even need that, who knows?

    BTW, everyone's recovery is different and the results of microfracuture are mixed depending on a number of variables. Some pro athletes were unable to resume their careers after the procedure. However, one factor is that the younger you are, the better your chance for success. See for e.g. Amare Stoudemere had it in his early 20s) vs. Chris Webber and Alan Houston, in their 30s. ( J-Kidd did come back but he lost his explosiveness).

    My surgeon did not take insurance so I used my out of network beenfit and paid the difference out of pocket. If your doctor is in network there should be no problem but if you get to this point, you should obviusly discuss this before going ahead.
    To me, I was willling to go out of network to have one of the best sports orthopedists perform the operation. Health is the most important thing!

    In any event, the best of luck to you!
     
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2010
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  35. danix

    danix Semi-Pro

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    Digging up an old thread. My knee got better, and I assumed the microfracture had done the trick.
    Two weeks ago, was playing doubles (I've switched to mostly doubles) and after the match, felt swelling in the knee again.
    Ortho says MRI shows damage has "progressed", I have a followup visit 12/31 to discuss but I assume he's going to pitch carticel again.
     
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  36. mikeler

    mikeler G.O.A.T.

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    Before any type of surgery, I'd get a 2nd opinion.
     
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  37. tlm

    tlm Legend

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    Wow 39 to me is not very old, a lot of you that are having that many problems at that young of age must not be very active or in very good shape.

    I did not get serious into tennis until my mid 40's and am now 57 and have been playing 5 days a week all year for the last 5 years or so. I am a strong 4.0 singles player, and only play singles. My playing style is grinding with a lot of top spin and consistent play, so I am not playing a easy end the point quick style.

    Sometimes me and my partners will hit for a good 20 minutes or so and then just play a set or 2. So I am not playing matches more than 1-2 times a week and the rest of the time is practicing.

    I have weight trained for years and used to take the summer off from weight training because I played so much softball. But once I switched to tennis I found out that I had to weight train all year to avoid injury.

    Believe me that resistance training is the key to longevity in sports. A good part of my training nowadays is focused on injury prevention. For tennis players that means specialized shoulder, elbow, wrist and leg training.


    A lot of the players at my club that are in their 40's now ask me how I play so much but am rarely injured. I ask these guys first what do they do for a living? And most have sedentary jobs. Then I ask them if they do any working out besides tennis.

    Of course most all say no, these guys are good players and have been playing for years. So I tell them that they are just an accident waiting to happen. They play a couple of times a week and are still in enough shape to play at a high level of course most of them only play doubles. But it is just a matter of time before they get injured.

    You cannot play this game at a high level into your 40's for long without becoming injured without other training. It is as simple as that, so it is up to you guys either start weight training and become stronger or keep whining and complaining about your old age.
     
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2012
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  38. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    What is "high level" in this context?
     
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  39. tlm

    tlm Legend

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    How about high level of intensity then? The exact level of talent is not that important, even good 3.5 players need to be able to avoid injuries as they get older. The subject is about playing tennis for a lifetime.
     
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2012
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  40. SteveI

    SteveI Legend

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    Great thread. I can relate to the OP and many of the posts. The bottom line for me is to understand I have only so many court hours in my body and to use them wisely. Each year I go to a few of our local tennis tourneys to mostly watch my players, students and tennis pals compete. Every year I am asked "how come I am not in the draws?" Tourney tennis beats the heck out of your body. I make my living being on my feet and I am mostly self employed. I play hard when I can and rest when it makes sense. I have been playing the sport since I was 12...many years ago. I have had one knee scoped and not looking to have the other one done anytime soon. My hips are fine. I changed my game from get everything back to..1st strike tennis. I will not play more than three times a week.. and never back to back days. I just say no...while I walk, work out or do something to get my activity each day.. tennis is limited so I can continue to play and have fun doing it. Good luck everyone...
     
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  41. Mick3391

    Mick3391 Professional

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    Wow, I've been playing since 12 and I'm 38, cooincidence. I have never had the horrible injuries you've had, but this year it's been one thing after another.

    Heh, you can't play if you can't move, so what is the question? I would suggest teaching if you have kids, or maybe at a school, it's still fun. Or play at a lower level, you can still win without killing yourself.

    My older brother has had one knee replaced, and now another.
     
    #41
  42. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    Many people I know till the 4.5 level have not had any injuries, in spite of playing 3 times a week and not doing any exercise other than stretching. They range in age from 35 to 70.
     
    #42
  43. tlm

    tlm Legend

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    The level does not have near as much to do with it as opposed to age and being out of shape. Actually many of the higher level players play more efficient with big serves and net games that keep the points shorter, as opposed to good 3.5 - 4.0 players that play a lot of long grinding points.

    How many of these older players that you know play singles 3 times a week? I know a lot of those type of players to but they play 99% doubles, they can not move good enough for singles anymore and are not in good enough shape.
     
    #43
  44. tlm

    tlm Legend

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    If you are talking about tournaments were you have to play more than once a day or real tough matches back to back you are smart in not participating. That is pushing it for anyone let alone older players.

    Another problem is the amount of time one has to work out, play tennis, rest and recover. Many people do not have the time it takes to stay in shape and play tennis. I think your idea of playing every other day is a good one, but I have played my way into shape by playing a lot. But again I usually will only play a match or 2 a week and the other days are practice.
     
    #44
  45. ollinger

    ollinger Legend

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    People delude themselves into thinking that being in shape has something to do with preventing wear and tear injury. For the most part, it does not. The OP has cartilage damage/loss in his knee that apparently is now worse. That doesn't happen because someone is not in sufficiently good shape. It happens because of overuse, in conjunction with a likely genetic predisposition. Getting into the best shape imaginable does not prevent those sort of severe physical problems.
     
    #45
  46. tlm

    tlm Legend

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    There is some truth to what you are saying, however overuse with lack of muscle strength, imbalance in muscle strength and bad posture can definitely make this wear come much sooner than it should. The more even strength your muscles have the less strain there is to the joints, the muscles take more of the shock instead of your joints.

    I do agree that a player could be in great shape aerobically and still have joint problems, actually a lot of the runner types are in great shape but have worn their joints out from all the running and do little if any weight training. My point is strength training not just being in good shape, there is a difference a person could be very fit aerobically and thin but still have problems because of lack of strength and muscle imbalance.
     
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2012
    #46
  47. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    I myself play 4.0 singles once or twice and 4.0 doubles once or twice a week, totally around 6 hours a week on the average. The only exercise I do is 15 minutes of stretching every day, and using the stairs at work. I am afraid of ruining my knees with extra exercise, like running. I figure that I am running during tennis, so why run more? I have never been injured, except once when I had TE when I was learning with bad technique, and once when I mistakenly switched to a demo racket in the middle of a session. Nothing that has kept me out for more than a day.
     
    #47
  48. tlm

    tlm Legend

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    Thats good hopefully you can keep it up. How old are you?
    I agree that the running on off days could be to much wear and tear, I do not advise running. I am talking about squats, lunges and calf raises.

    A lot of times I will train my legs before I play tennis instead of the next day so they get time to recover. My point is strength training not aerobic training is the key to injury prevention.
     
    #48
  49. SteveI

    SteveI Legend

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    Most of these events require you play more than once a day.. some you have to play over a 4 day weekend. It is not a problem to tell yourself... just take it easy and have fun and compete within reason. Once the bells rings, you will do what you have to do to get balls back and win points. You might not feel the pain while in action because you are amped up. It does come down to the fact that tennis, basketball, volleyball and other court sports just rip your body apart by the very nature of the movements required to compete.

    Biking, swimming.. etc are much easier on ones body since the motions are pretty much straight ahead.

    As the Great Ollie has posted...being in great shape does not save you. It is the miles and the time.. that causes the wear and tear. Being in perfect condition of course will help and give you more court hours. Also a family history of joint issues will not be overcome with techique and conditioning.

    Like anything else, you need to be moderate and use common sense.. ie listen to you body.. eat right and rest. You need time to recover to play another day. I have so many friends younger than me that have left the sport not following single common sense. Happy Hoildays!
     
    #49
  50. tlm

    tlm Legend

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    You make some real good points, and I agree to an extent that it is the miles and time that takes its toll. I have played 3 matches in a row on consecutive days and gotten away with it but that is rare and I try to avoid this because that is pushing it to much. My point is the more structurally sound you are the more stress you can take.
     
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2012
    #50

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