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48: Brian Harder on ACL Injury: Advice from an Impatient Patient

Episode description

We don’t want to think about it but I’m sure lots of us do. What happens if/when we blow our knee? what does it mean when that happens, what are the mechanics that contribute to it; what choices need to be made for treatment and recovery?

There are many things today to consider, and today, Brian Harder, a frequent guest and good friend of mine shares his philosophy, sadly, from personal experience. Earlier this year, Brian had an ACL injury in the backcountry. Being an orthopedic physician assistant and therefore medically trained, Brian brings some interesting and debatable albeit a scientific approach to dealing with a ruptured ACL. 

We’ll discuss factors that led to the incident and lessons to perhaps avoid your own. Hint: that GoPro on your head might have more consequences than you realize. 

We’ll analyze the incident itself and best practices for getting your sorry ass out of the backcountry without making the problem worse. After that, many decisions must be made: surgery immediately or later? What type of graft? How should I choose the right surgeon?  

Please note, although medically trained, this is obviously not medical advice. We all present unique factors and unique cases. Brian says so himself in the show - these are his opinions in a sea of opinions. You know we all have two things in common and one of those is opinions. You should do your own due diligence and discuss your specific case. Many would disagree with his thoughts here, while others would agree. 

Also, for context, Brian is 56 at the time of the recording. 

Well? What did you think? Agree? Disagree? have questions? we’d love to hear your experience - what worked for you, what you might have done differently. please include your age and fitness level when yo do. If you have questions, you can contact me privately or include it in the comments at takeabigleap dot com/ ACL


With that, let’s listen in and gear up for what’s next: 


Where to find Brian:

You can find Brian at and on instagram at brian.skimolife

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