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  1. #1
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    How many have broken bones skating?

    I would like to know how many of us have broken bones (or other serious injury) as a result of skating, including:
    1. which bone(s)/body part(s)
    2. how they were broken/injured
    3. type of treatment
    4. how it affected your thoughts/feelings about skating
    5. whether you have remaining physical damage from the injury which makes skating more difficult
    6. if there are precautions you take now that you didn't before the injury

    A.
    1. Spiral fractures of right tibia (about where top of boot is), and fibula
    2. I was just standing still when suddenly my foot turned causing me to fall on a twisted leg.
    3. Surgery, metal plate, surgery to remove metal plate a year later, 2 rounds of PT
    4. I developed a severe phobia when I initially tried to return to skating, so after a year of that, I took 4 years off to start again a couple years ago. The phobia-level fear is gone, though I'm apprehensive and refuse to push myself (not going to the Olympics anyway).
    5. I have some permanent damage because of surgeries, the worse of which is pronation plus difficulty controlling my right foot, so RFOE, RBOE, RFX and RBX are difficult (moving my blade to the inside has helped to some extent but not completely).
    6. The only way to keep from falling by a foot turning while standing still, is to not stand still. Since I sometimes must stand still (like during lessons), all I can do as a precaution is to constantly think about my feet when a situation requires that I stand in one spot.

    B.
    1. Broken left wrist (broken radius right at the top)
    2. I think the back of my blade caught the ice, and because the direction of the fall would have made me hit my head on the side boards, I turned sideways at the last second... I guess my arm/hand was in the way.
    3. Standard cast and a round of PT
    4. I was very relieved that I didn't hit my head on the boards, so while I knew immediately that the wrist was broken, I wasn't upset at the time. I was back on the ice several days later (not doing much, but still).
    5. After all these months there is still pain, which my dr claims is normal for this type of injury. It only affects skating in that I can't bear weight on it without pain, so if I fall I will have trouble getting back up. Things besides skating are affected, but we are only talking skating.
    6. I wear wrist guards now, and try to not be so close to the side boards that I would hit my head on them if I were to fall.
    Last edited by treesprite; 03-25-2014 at 08:02 PM.

  2. #2
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    I broke a rib and my tailbone. The treatment for both was "rest". They taped the rib. The tailbone was a freak accident where I was standing still, and then I wasn't. The rib was from falling on a spiral. I don't think either had effect on my skating, because I am already over-cautious because of breaking my neck (unrelated to skating). I consider it a triumph that I went from "may not walk again" to ice skating- but am still terrified of something happening...

    The injuries that had a much larger effect on my skating was my labral tear (I cannot do spirals at all anymore, making further work on MITF tests impossible, and I had good spirals- boo!)- and although I can usually control the pain, if I flare up the injury, I often cannot bear weight on it off ice, which obviously takes me off ice too. This has cost me a small fortune in PT over the past few years. But since it is usually not painful, is not worth risking surgery.

    Spraining my wrist (did not break, but severe sprain) also was very difficult on me. This injury also made work and school very difficult, since it was my dominate hand and it was a long time before I had any useful range of motion. It didn't really effect my skating long term though. In the short term, it took me off the ice for way too much time before a test (I had to test in the brace, which sucked because it throws off spins)- and I learned that I have to tie my own skates. I tried to return to the ice before I could do that, and have DH tie them, but that did NOT work.

    I've also been sent off the ice for months and back to PT several time with knee and IT band issues, but not bones.
    Last edited by Skittl1321; 03-25-2014 at 08:06 PM.

  3. #3
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    No officially broken bones in 20+ years of skating (axels and doubles for part of them). A couple of sprains (knee and ankle) and a possible cracked tailbone, but that was from trying to do a spin on roller skates. A possible hairline fracture in my thumb from trying to do a twizzle in hockey skates (notice a trend here ) but I never had it checked out by a doc. Oh, and a nice chunk out of my kneecap, but I really don't know how that happened. It might have been from skating, but I can't pinpoint an incident.

    PT for various muscle injuries and strains, but nothing long lasting.

    No affect on my feelings about skating. Comes with the territory. :shrug: Although, I will admit that now that I am pushing 50, I am not as fearless as I used to be.

  4. #4
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    I edited the original post so other types of serious injuries (besides broken bones) can be included.

  5. #5

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    I've never broken anything, ever, in any situation.

    I did crack a bone in my ankle when I fell down two steps just over a year ago. But the crack was inside the actual bone, so I don't count it as broken.

    I've sprained and strained a few ligaments. The worst was probably my shoulder sprain two years ago. I still have a mental block on forward crossovers as a result.

  6. #6

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    I broke my tailbone. Like Skittl1321, I don't know how it happened. One second I was spinning and the next second I was flat on my back on the ice. No memory of anything in between. Had to sit on a donut cushion for a while and had twinges at the bottom of my spine when I got up after sitting for a long time, but those went away with time.

    I also had a minor concussion (although it didn't feel like minor at the time) when I was practicing my sit spin a week before adult nationals, and while trying to get lower to the ice, sat too far back on my blade. The sensation of the back of my head bouncing off the ice is something I would really never like to experience again. A few minutes on the hockey bench and some ice at home took care of the ache, and I haven't had any lasting effects other than some fear of sit spins.
    You should never write words with numbers. Unless you're seven. Or your name is Prince. - "Weird Al" Yankovic, "Word Crimes"

  7. #7
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    overedge- at least you were spinning. I was literally standing still waiting for the Dutch Waltz to start.

    I've only hit my head once, and I luckily hit really hard on my shoulders with my head tucked, so my head hit secondary, after the fall was done. Horrible back pain for a few weeks, but thankfully no head injury.

  8. #8

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    Concussion, torn meniscus on my right knee and four injuries within my left hip. With the concussion I went to hospital because my head was bleeding, but I didn't need anything except of bed rest. With the knee injury and hip injuries I needed surgeries.

  9. #9

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    Not while skating, but skiing -or not skiing well to be more accurate.
    Completely tore my ACL, 2-3 (on a scale of 3) MCL tear and tore some of my meniscus on my right knee. I chose to rehab the MCL and then have surgery on the ACL instead of doing surgery on both at the same time. Knee still hurts, especially if I do lots of run throughs in the same week, but it's manageable. It definitely doesn't like to pull out of short landings, so I definitely know when a jump is cheated. I'm somehow scared of my axel take off now, so I'll go through months of riding the LFO and not taking off. Then they'll be fine for a few weeks and just when I think I'm making progress, go back to abject fear

  10. #10

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    Ow, ioana. ACL tears are incredibly common in skiers.

    A.
    1. Bimalleolar fracture of the left ankle.
    2. Was just dinking around. Toepick got caught--so the toe stayed and the rest of me keeled over.
    3. Got plates & screws in both sides of the ankle. On crutches/cart for 6 weeks and then gradually back to walking. PT for 4 weeks (?). Hardware removed when it HUUUUUUURRRRTTT and I also ended up needing a fasciotomy since my calf would cramp up incredibly painfully after about 10 minutes of skating.
    4. I was scared to get back on the ice for sure, and terribly naive. At 37 it was the first broken bone I'd ever experienced (after years of competitive ski racing, gymnastics and a few seasons of diving even) so I was ill prepared for the strange sensations. Thankfully people had recommended the PT which made a HUGE difference in my regaining strength and range of motion.
    5. Once the hardware was removed I had no issues. That ankle feels more solid than ever.
    6. I taped the ankle for a while but haven't had any problems so haven’t taken any precautions. This was back in 2007, I think.

    B.
    1. nondisplaced fracture of the right tibia. Fall 2010.
    2. Forward power pulls. I just lost my balance and my whole body fell onto my right leg (nonskating leg).
    3. Because it was essentially a crack, and probably a sprain as well, and the joint was stable, so I was just off the ice for like 3 months. I did go get some PT, as I felt the extra tools that the PT had (tissue scraping, ultrasound) would do things that simple stretching and strengthening exercises couldn’t.
    4. I was patient about getting back on the ice and not overdoing it—but still twisted the dang thing at least once. Taped most of the time but not always.
    5. and 6. See C.

    C.
    1. Another nondisplaced fracture of the right tibia—May 2012. Only this time, the joint wasn’t stable. Some torn or stretched ligaments.
    2. EVILLE BRACKETS. OF course I had no idea what I was doing and I should have still been at the “doing them on two feet” stage but whatever. I’m just really, really adept at getting off balance and making my blades work for me in all the wrong ways.
    3. Week and a half after the injury, surgery. Plates and screws.
    4. I have been back on the ice only a few times since. I had the hardware removed last July, because I was STILL having pain on the outer ankle, in the area of the injury, but this doesn’t seem to have made much difference. I just haven’t really tried skating again since pre-hardware removal, other than putting my boots on a couple of times at home to see how it feels.
    5. This ankle is just permanently messed up. There’s scar tissue, it feels like there’s cushioning missing, it clicks, sometimes it hurts. Because the symptoms are so inconsistent, though, I don’t feel like I can go back to the doctor and say THIS is what’s wrong, now fix it.
    6. I still do want to get back on the ice, fearful as I am (yes, call me an idiot). I keep meaning to get my boots on and get used to them again, and I know I’m going to have to tape tape tape and Bunga pad the heck out of the ankle to make it work, but I do want to make it work. I'm tired of doing exercise I don't enjoy, and I was THISCLOSE to finally having a Bronze FS test ready when I broke the ankle. We'll have to see if I can get sufficient flexion and strength back for the sit spin--the few times I tried this, prior to hardware removal, it was awfully tough to get into position.
    BARK LESS. WAG MORE.

  11. #11

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    Ouch, LilJen, sounds like you've had more than your share of bad luck. I hope you can get back on the ice and pass the Bronze test.

    Broke my left leg - tibia just above the ankle, at the top of the boot, and the fibula up near the knee - in Nov 2009. Fell right after an RBO 3-turn after I skidded, pitched forward, and my left foot came down, got stuck in the ice, so instead of falling splat on my knee or stomach, I fell on top of my left leg as it twisted underneath me. Had surgery 5 days later to put in a rod and 4 screws in the tibia. The fibula didn't need surgery, healed on its own in 6 weeks.

    I was off the ice for 6 months. Had 6 months of PT, starting when I was able to weight-bear. My doc had initially said it would probably take a year for the swelling to go down enough to be able to get my foot in my skate, but after icing 3 times a day for about 30 min at a time, I was able to fit my skate on my foot soon after I started weight-bearing (sitting down, not walking in the skates ). But I wasn't allowed to do turns on the left foot until about the 10-month mark. When I did try to practice full-strength, I had a lot of pain from the hardware. Also had pain just walking, esp on any sort of incline (like if the sidewalk happened to slope up or down slightly). So I got the hardware removed in April 2011. Had PT from May through August and went back to skating in July.

    Like treesprite, I don't have 100% range of motion in that ankle. Back turns and crossovers, esp forward CCW, are difficult. I've thought about having my blade moved a bit to the inside. I have Klingbeil skates, though, and they insist the blade be mounted down the middle (although I've heard they'll move the blades themselves) or they void the warranty. My skates are 8 years old, so I don't think I'll need to take them back, lol, but I may want/need a rebuild at some point so not sure how they would handle that. And since I'm so used to skating with the blades mounted as they are, would any movement throw me off? Something to think about. I'll ask my coach and PT (who is also a skating coach at my rink ).

    I also have difficulty with the sit spin, although it's better than it was with the hardware. Before I broke my leg, I got to the point where I could get my skating leg parallel to the ice. I haven't seen any videos or pics of my current position, but I know it's nowhere near that. But I'm still trying. The range has improved over time, and I feel like I'm making (slow) progress on the left turns. I tried the Gold MIF test in Sept and was nowhere near passing and very depressed by the comments - I wasn't expecting to pass, but didn't expect to be scored as low as I was. But my coach thinks I'm improving and wants me to try again, so I may sometime this summer.

  12. #12

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    No broken bones that I know of -- once I fell straight down on my tail bone (on a very slow backward three) and it hurt for many months but didn't stop me from doing anything.

    No concussion that I know of. I did hit my head on the ice a few times; I stopped skating for the day, it hurt for a few days, but no lasting effects. Once was on a LFI mohawk and once on a LFI three -- no wonder I have a mental block about those turns. Well, that and the fact that I didn't learn them until I was an adult, unlike the other forward threes and RFI. Once on a back bracket, before I was working on them officially.

    Sympathies to those who have suffered.

    Muscle pulls, in groin and quadriceps, have kept me off ice for a month or two, and interfered with daily walking or moving from sitting to standing.

    The most lasting injury was to my left knee, but I don't even know what to call it. I fell on it a couple times working on LBI threes (a continuing theme about how I never liked left inside edges even before my left knee went bad), with some sore bruising. While it was still bruised I collided with a more powerful adult skater who wasn't watching where he was going and fell on the knee at higher speed. Maybe it was stiff for a couple days, sore and bruised for a lot longer, but I was able to actually do stuff for a few months.

    And then one day I got on the ice and immediately realized my left knee wouldn't bend while I had weight on it. So I couldn't even do basic stroking and the parent who was monitoring encouraged me to get my money back for that session.

    Off for several months; a couple of doctor visits, finally convinced them to give me an MRI months later, but the only diagnosis I could get was proto-arthritis/chondromalacia. Which would explain the pain but not the utter weakness, the inability to bend and support weight at the same time.

    Meanwhile I did physical therapy and it did get stronger and I could go back to skating, but that knee has never been the same since. Sometimes it hurts a bit, sometimes it's weak and won't bend enough to do turns or proper stroking, other times it's OK. No explanation of what the problem is. And I'll never have good turns on that leg except the basic FO three, nor a proper forward sitspin (which I never had anyway, but now I don't dare try to work on getting lower).

  13. #13

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    Ouch, everyone!! Yes, I've had some spectacularly bad luck. It was news to me in my 40s that, gee, I might just have really awful ankles.

    I have hit my head a few times as well--once on forward power pulls. Scared me off them for like 3 months, and I still feel like I've never really "gotten" that element (back power pulls are easy peasy).

    The other thing I'll be fighting against for that sit spin and loop jump for the Bronze FS is a hip impingement (free leg on spin, takeoff & landing leg for loop). I got an injection last summer (it's probably a torn labrum) and it's been OK since, but who knows when that might wear off or get worse? Before the injection I could NOT swing the leg around, nor could I jump off of it. Just a geezer fighting aging here
    BARK LESS. WAG MORE.

  14. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by LilJen View Post
    The other thing I'll be fighting against for that sit spin and loop jump for the Bronze FS is a hip impingement (free leg on spin, takeoff & landing leg for loop). I got an injection last summer (it's probably a torn labrum) and it's been OK since, but who knows when that might wear off or get worse? Before the injection I could NOT swing the leg around, nor could I jump off of it. Just a geezer fighting aging here
    I said the same thing to the lady competing in Silver ladies V. 'inspirational', not geezer . And, seriously, I'm impressed you keep coming back and regaining all these skills

  15. #15
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    A.
    1. Dislocated right kneecap
    2. While doing a lunge
    3. PT, and time off the ice
    4. I worried for a while about jumps, since right leg is my landing leg. But when nothing happened, I stopped worrying.
    5. no, thankfully
    6. No more lunges for me!!

    B.
    1. high left ankle sprain (meaning I tore all the ligaments) + broken left fibula
    2. Like Jen, the EVILLE BRACKETS! It was a backwards one, not sure which foot now, but I lost my balance on the turn & caught my left toe pick in the ice as I fell straight down on my behind.
    3. surgery on the ankle with hardware, off the ice for months, PT for ankle. The fibula healed on its own.
    4. Those brackets scared the bejeezus out of me afterwards. I forced myself to do them my second or third time back on the ice while holding my coach's hand. Eventually, I got past it, and even managed to pass Gold Moves.
    5. No, thankfully, again.
    6. This happened at the very end of a session when I was pushing myself past the point of tired. I like to think I listen to my body better now and leave when I reach that point!

    This isn't an injury, per se, but I've had on and off tendonitis in my right ankle from trying to land the axel. It's far more frustrating than either of the two injuries I mentioned above, because it doesn't go away.

  16. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by Morgail View Post
    This isn't an injury, per se, but I've had on and off tendonitis in my right ankle from trying to land the axel. It's far more frustrating than either of the two injuries I mentioned above, because it doesn't go away.
    Try icing your ankle nightly, at least 20 min at a time, and wear a bunga pad around the ankle when you skate. I started having tendonitis in my right ankle about a year before I broke my leg, had some PT, and they recommended the nightly icing whenever I had problems with it. Usually, it took care of the problem - well, at least, it stopped the pain/soreness.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Skittl1321 View Post
    I broke a rib and my tailbone.
    I'm still sore from my last tailbone fall, 4 years later.

  18. #18
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    6. This happened at the very end of a session when I was pushing myself past the point of tired. I like to think I listen to my body better now and leave when I reach that point!
    Same here when I broke my wrist. I got off the ice because I was too tired to skate safely. Well, my friend had borrowed a CD from me a few days earlier and got the guard to let him play it this night, since there were only 3 of us skating. The song that was his reason for borrowing it started to play and he insisted I get back on the ice to skate to it. I said no, but he kept persisting so I gave in and went out on the ice. It took less than a minute for me to break my wrist. I will never skate tired again!

  19. #19

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    I'm just getting back into skating. So far, knock on wood, I've not had any real injuries.

    But I've had some close calls already. The other day I was attempting some toepick-type turns--I don't know the proper term, but you see skaters do them on TV--and anyhow, suddenly I just went down, and my head was just inches from hitting the ice. That was a little scary. I also fell fairly hard on my tailbone while attempting some footwork a couple months ago. It was sore for probably 3 to 4 weeks afterward. Then last week, I fell awkwardly twice while attempting a sit spin for the first time in 12 years!

    I do feel like I need to be more careful now than when I was younger (I'm 45). And like you say, Treesprite, skating tired is a real issue. It definitely leads to more falls, and more awkward falls, so I want to avoid it. But, the time I have available for skating is very limited, so I get tempted to push through the tiredness and keep working anyhow.

  20. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by LilJen View Post
    The other thing I'll be fighting against for that sit spin and loop jump for the Bronze FS is a hip impingement (free leg on spin, takeoff & landing leg for loop). I got an injection last summer (it's probably a torn labrum) and it's been OK since, but who knows when that might wear off or get worse? Before the injection I could NOT swing the leg around, nor could I jump off of it. Just a geezer fighting aging here
    I don't want to scare you, but the hip impingement is one of the four hip injuries I had on my hip. It happened because bits of my labrum got torn off, and were floating in the hip joint making it 'mechanically dysfunctional'. If you don't do anything with it to have it fixed and keep pushing it anyway, you will start overcompensating with your gluteus and your iliopsoas (to be able to lift your leg when the bits of the labrum are making the hip joint 'stuck'). So it will eventually lead with putting so much strain on the iliopsoas and gluteus so much that they get partially torn (and if it is still not diagnosed, it could get completely torn). I was 'lucky' that after a year of visiting four different specialists, having various scans and doing lots of rehabilitation, the last hip specialist eventually diagnosed it so my iliopsoas and gluteus medius were only partially torn. But after it was diagnosed, the surgery was within 2 days because they thought that it was quite urgent. (Maybe if the previous three hip specialist read properly the outcomes of the scans, I would never partially tear my iliopsoas and gluteus medius. ) The hip surgery was pretty bad. I have had three knee surgeries in the past, but the one on my hip was worse than all three knee surgeries together! The outcome now is that I will never be able to jump (on the ice) and had to switch to ice dance. Be careful with hip injury!

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