Few people can argue against the fact that cycling is an excellent way to get fit and healthy, and recent research in New Zealand has shown that those who too. Have you ever considered the use of an e-bike for rehabilitation after surgery? If you’ve recently had, or due to have knee surgery, can you get back in the saddle after that?
In short, yes. Riding a bike is a fantastic method of physical therapy for recovering knees, whether you’ve had surgery, or damaged your knee taking part in high impact sports or running. If you have an e-bike, then even better, as you can control the amount of stress you place on your knees.
Here are a few recovery tips to help you prepare to get back on your e-bike.
Getting Started: Passive Range of Motion
To begin with, the main goal is to decrease the swelling in your knee and be able to achieve a full passive range of motion. You will need to be prepared for this. If you’ve had knee replacement, then being able to cycle again all depends on getting your entire body back in motion as quickly as possible after the surgery.
Even if your knee pain limited your activities before the surgery, you will need to work hard afterwards to get your knee back to where it was before.
Physical Therapy and Becoming Active
Physical therapy is one of the most important factors following knee surgery. A physical therapist would usually visit you soon after surgery, and they will help you stand, sit, walk, and use a continuous passive motion machine.
During the early stages of your physical therapy, you will experience a certain level of discomfort, stiffness, and pain, but it is important to focus on the outcome. To succeed in getting back to cycling, you must follow the advice of your physical therapist and become active as quickly as possible.
It is possible that a rehab centre would not allow you to return home until you have regained the ability to walk and climb stairs, so the sooner you can do that, then the sooner you can get back on your bike!
Working Your Way Up to Cycling with a Stationary Bike
Following surgery, it is critical to get back a full range of motion. The good news is that using a stationary bike during your physical therapy is a great way to improve range of motion. And using a stationary bike will also prepare you to get back on your bicycle.
You must check with your doctor and your physical therapist to find out when you can start using a stationary bicycle. Be sure to set the seat height appropriately. Your knee should be straight down and resting on the pedal, with only a slight bend in your knee.
Start slowly and keep in mind that you may not be able to turn the cranks all the way around. Slowly pedal forwards and backwards for a few minutes. Continue this routine until your range of motion improves, which often happens quite quickly.
Achieving Full Range of Motion
When your knee can bend about 90 degrees, you should be able to turn the cranks fully around on your stationary bicycle. Once you can complete a full revolution, consider adding light resistance to help improve the endurance and strength of your muscles. If you start feeling pain in your knee, decrease the resistance.
In most situations, you can begin riding a stationary bike about two weeks after your knee replacement surgery.
Advancing to Outdoor Cycling
And after about six weeks of riding a stationary bike, your doctor may clear you to start riding your bicycle outdoors. Your doctor must clear you before you begin riding outdoors. Once you start cycling outdoors, take it carefully and slowly, and always stop if you feel pain.
Most e-bikes allow you to control the amount of electric assistance you use. Start with the highest level of assistance and an easy gear. This will enable you to ensure that you don’t stress your knees. As you progress, you can gradually decrease the level of assistance.
The most important thing you can do to prepare for resuming cycling after knee surgery is to keep all of your scheduled follow-up appointments, follow the exercise and therapy routines recommended to you, and avoid overdoing it.
Hurrecane bikes have e-bikes for all abilities and uses, from folding electric commuter bikes to electric mountain bikes, so visit us today.