tennis anyone?

Thanks for all who got this blog going.  It’s going to be a long recovery, and this will give me something to do while resting my leg on the desk…

I ruptured my AT on 6/13 (yes Friday the 13th, somebody reminded me later that day).  I had scheduled a tennis date with an old colleague of mine in South San Jose, CA.  The night before, he told me to forget it, as the racket he was going to lend me broke a string.   No problem, I needed a new racket anyway.

I live in NJ, and commute to SJC a couple times a month.  At home, I ride mountain bikes every day I can, a nice combination of park trails and single track, much of it homemade.  With more practice, I was planning on getting through the whole ten mile loop without putting a foot down.

Back to SJC - Bought the racket, met my buddy at 7am for a quick match before work.  We hadn’t played in 4 or 5 years.  I play off and on with my 8 yr old daughter, but nothing too strenuous.

After 30 minutes of warm-up, we decided to play a set.  I won the first game, hitting very well, new racket technology added a lot of zip and spin to my game, my friend thought I was taking lessons (for you tennis nuts, I play at a 3.3 level, felt like a 3.5 today!)  Went behind the baseline for a deep shot, planted my right foot, returned it well, and heard a loud POP.  Sounded like a bowling ball hitting concrete dropped from 4 ft up.

Thought I ran into the fence, but nothing was even close, and I knew in a split second what had happened.  A friend from work had an ATR in January, in physio now, and another HS buddy busted his in April playing basketball.  All I could think was “why me”.

My friend helped me back to my car, I called my HS buddy (also an MD, just getting out of walking cast), he ran through a couple quick tests over the phone, and confirmed my fears.

Asked a local walker where was the nearest hospital, she gave me directions to Kaiser Permanente a few miles away.

One hour later, I was in a splint and on my way, checked out of hotel (bellman refused my tip after helping with luggage!), off to work for the sympathy and acts of kindness, shipped my luggage home, and got to the airport for the long flight back home  :-(


enuf for now, thanks for listening!


6/13  ATR

6/19  surgery

7/2  post op visit


8 Responses to “tennis anyone?”

  1. Hey Dave,

    We’re all sad to have you join us. I too, have a couple of friends who have gone through this process recently, and their advice and feedback has been invaluable. Use your friends and this site to help get through this long process.


  2. Sorry Dave. Welcome to the club. Looks like basketball and tennis players continue to take the lead on this injury…ugh.

    Hope the plan ride back was not too bad. My ATR happened in Istanbul and I had to fly back to Zurich (3.5 hours) and it was rather unpleasant. Hope you managed.

    Good luck and keep us posted about your decisions in the coming days.

  3. Welcome..between the softball players, tennis players, and basketball players, this site will never shut down. Dennis should start looking for advertisers and make some

    I feel for you during that flight from San Jose back to NJ. I was just in San Jose for work in April and thought the flghts were torture (flew from Newark to Dallas to San Jose)! I can’t imagine the flight with a ruptured achilles and trying to get around the airports.

    Good luck with your ATR. It gets much easier after a few days. The hardest for me was not being able to be independent and it drove me nuts. Now I am getting there…if you want something really bad, you will find a way to get it. Good Luck!

  4. Craig, Zurichfan, jennt,

    Thanks for the replys. Reading over the blog has helped a lot in what to expect, in many ways the realism here makes it tougher! I broke a finger mtn biking a few years back, and I thought it was so bad, but nothing to compare to this immobilization!

    I’ll add more to my blog when I get a chance.


  5. I did my finger last year also - had surgery on it (screw and a pin) and was casted for 6 weeks. I thought that was horrible and the hand therapy afterwards was torture. Now that I am experiencing this, that was a walk in the park.


  6. Ed,

    Hard to remember it now, but when it happened it was hell. Spiral fracture, right ring finger. Waking up from general and the drive home was a special horror for my wife, with me screaming the whole time. My anaesth. did a good job on the ATR, no aftereffects at all.

    My fracture was slow fall during mtn bike ride, swore I would do no more technical riding. Of course three years later, I ride 5x the difficulty then I did back then. ;-)

    My old job used a lot of IM, worst problem was feelng dumb because I couldn’t text quickly! This is a whole ‘nother story here..


  7. Welcome (?) to the club, Dave. Mine was during tennis as well. Like someone else said, who knew tennis was so dangerous!?

    I was at the net and chased down a soft low lob, hitting it back over the net over my left shoulder. I think I pivoted on my left foot back to face the net, leading as it came around with my right foot. I plant my left foot to push off and heard that fateful, horrible * POP * you mentioned and hit the deck. As another tennis player, you will appreciate this: one of my opponents came over later while I was being iced down and congratulated me on my “great shot”, which I had missed while collapsed on the court spitting out expletives. :)

  8. I also broke my tendon in a tennis game.

    From now on, tennis… only as a computer game :)

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