Easing back into golf and tennis

I’m wondering if any one has any insight reentry into golf and tennis.  After hearing several others say they are back to sports at 17 weeks or so, at 13 weeks myself I’m beginning to think about a transition plan.   thx

7 Responses to “Easing back into golf and tennis”

  1. Hi Gunner

    I started tennis at 13 weeks, playing really easy. Just a few hits and rallies.
    At 17 weeks, I play doubles only, and if playing back do not go after the drop shots near the net, and if playing near the net do not try to go back for lobs. My partner understands he has to cover the shots in back, while I’ll cover short balls for him. Side to side movement allows me to keep most impact/weight on my heel, thereby unloading the AT. When serving I do not go up on my toes, even on my serving-push - right - good - foot.
    I hit right, and my biggest problem was a very weak backhand because I could not push with my left (ATR’d) foot. Compensated by using a low strung racquet for more power, and adjusting timing.
    Don’t expect many easy shots from your opponents. Your first smash, cross-court winner, and first service game won will feel really good!
    Let me know how you adjust, and any tips I can use.

  2. I think it depends on how much you trust your judgment while playing competitive sports. The ortho surgeon who repaired my first ATR 8 yrs ago seemed to appreciate that I don’t like to do things “by halves”, so gave me a conservative rule of thumb: Don’t return to the high-risk sports until you can do a bunch of 1-leg heel raises without grunting or groaning.

    I followed that advice — which worked fine with my schedule anyway — and when I finally returned to competitive volleyball, I was very soon playing as well as I ever did.

    For the ~5 months when I might have been tempted to play volleyball (between about 5 months and 10), I was busy racing small sailboats, flying steerable kites (no jumping or kite-boarding!), and bicycling almost every day, so I was having fun, and getting good cardio and strength exercise. Volleyball (beach and court) is mostly a winter activity for me anyway, so it was easy to do what he recommended. Somewhere there’s an alternative universe where it was hard, but I don’t know what it looks like!

  3. Hello everyone. I ruptured my right achilles 5/2/10 playing basketball and had surgery 5/7/10. Today I’m post-op day #15. Things get better everyday. What are your doctors and PTs saying about golfing? Good luck and I hope for a smooth recovery for everyone.

  4. Hi Eli

    My PT and ortho doctor clearance to do all sports at 17 weeks post-op was based on multiple factors, such as lack of pain and swelling after workouts, amount, location and tenderness of scar tissue remaining, size, flexibility, and width of the tendon, time at full ROM, ability to train yourself to not take unnecessary chances and overstrain, balance, effort, steadiness and fluidity in movements - walking, jogging, etc. Real single toe raises will take 6 months, and are not the only criterion of readiness.
    PT and ortho doc told me that full strength will return only if I use the tendon/ankle at this point, and babying it will only prolong the period of weakness (collagen III scar tissue in the tendon). So I am working on building strength and endurance to get to collagen I, the strong tendon material. PS. My surgeon/PT are conservative, but willing to work with me, and are smart enough to not hold me back for 6 months.

  5. Cont’d:

    The last PT eval showed full ROM, full strength in most directions(df, e, i), except pf, which was 3/5. My soleus and gastrocnemius muscle definition were of major interest, and were deemed excellent. Circumference of left (ATR’d) leg 16 inches, right leg 16.5 inches.
    Sorry to be do long-winded, but I hope this helps others gain insight to what docs and PT are looking for before giving that clear to all sports milestone.

  6. Lou: Thanks for your detailed responses. At 13 weeks, I’m pretty impressed with your progress. Seems like a long way from here but perhaps I’ll make it by then. In any event, the prospects of playing subdued tennis in 4 weeks is quite motivating!

  7. At 20-ish weeks, my “Biodex” eval showed results just like Sully’s at 17. I haven’t discussed volleyball with my Ortho, or even my PT. I’ve considering going to an indoor Beach Volleyball drop-in night, partly just to run around in the sand, and maybe to play half-heartedly if the running feels OK. The sand seems AT-friendlier to me than a court floor — though I may be overgeneralizing from the fact that both of my ATRs happened while playing court (not beach) ball.

    Haven’t actually done it yet, partly because I’m busy with sailing and other things. And it’s not important for my lifestyle or my normal schedule, which replaces volleyball with sailing in the summer. Also, I’m now doing a LOT of bicycling — mostly getting down to Lake Ontario for sailing, and back up the (moderate) hill to home — so I think my calf strength is coming along OK without trusting my temperament to play “subdued” volleyball! OTOH, I think it would be fun to run around in the sand for the first time in a LONG time. . .

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