Well, I put my left knee out of joint at last night's soccer game. The really sad part was that I did it while stretching, before the game even started. You can get some funny injuries with cleats on. (last week I pulled the groin muscle in my right leg. Never done that before) I was coming up from a deep back-of-the-leg tae-kwon-do stretch like I've done hundreds of times and my left knee went slightly sideways out of joint (outward). It's been long enough since I've done that, at first I didn't recognize the feeling and thought my leg might be cramping. I took my weight off it immediately and went down to sitting and then recognized what happened and straightened it back into joint. --that's less of a pushing it back into joint than reaching below the knee and pulling it straight.
I was glad there was no one else on the sidelines just then, 'cause I got kind of upset at the thought - not at the pain, but at the awareness that I had potentially just mostly undone two or three years of reconditioning that knee since the last time I put it out of joint.
(for those of you who don't know, the reason I stopped playing soccer in tenth grade was because I had a collision with another player on top of the ball and pulled all the tendons in that knee. Then I kept putting it out of joint approximately once a year. I couldn't really run for five years. The last three years, I played softball for the Open Text Spiders, in Waterloo, and this summer I signed up for AASA soccer.)
I cried just a little then pulled it together and blew my nose. Adam arrived then and asked if I was okay as he put on his shoes. When I told him what happened he said "you're not going to play, are you?" I said I didn't know, I had to see what it felt like when I stood up. I stood up shortly after that and did some gentle stretches and it was a little sore but after I walked around a little I could do the same stretches with no soreness so I played the game. I probably took more subs than everyone else in the game, but that was to catch my breath and get a drink; my knee felt fine.
It was a good game even though we lost and my knee felt fine until I tried getting up after sitting and taking my cleats and stuff off - I tried to put weight on a bent left leg and it didn't want to, so I had Steve give me a hand up using only my right leg. I could walk just fine, though driving sucked a little (stick shift).
When I got home I iced my knee some and sat for a while watching TV with Bill. Remembering that when I first injured my knee I ended up not being able to straighten it the next day, I did some gentle extensions ocassionally all evening. I forgot it could bind up in the other direction. It wasn't until just before bed that I lay on my back and tried pulling my knees up to my chest. That really hurt. This morning I've stretched that gently a few times, and it's some better, but it still doesn't like bending that sharply. It's a little swollen on the outside of the knee, toward the thigh. I'm going to ice it a little more and give it some chi treatment, but maybe I should see if our health insurance covers therapy for sports injuries.
the way the game went reminded me of lots of previous games I've played. We had pretty good defense and kept the ball in the other team's half of the field a lot of the time, but most of the shots our forwards took on goal went just over or past the goal. Their team was better at pulling back extra players to defend the goal. It's a 7 on 7 game on a half field, so if your team has extra subs the extra wind gives you a huge advantage in playing the whole field (their team had four or five subs. we started out with one sub, had up to three for a while, then went down to two when Tom left). Steve thought maybe we should take subs earlier in the game so we didn't get so tired out. it's a theory. Subbing is very casual in this league -you don't break for subbing, you just wait for a good time and call for a sub and run off the field. yesterday I learned you can also just run to the sidelines and get a drink of water without taking a sub, which helps.