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E-Bikes Can Accelerate the Rehabilitation Time After Surgery


E-Bikes Can Accelerate the Rehabilitation Time After Surgery
Published on September 05, 2013Email To Friend    Print Version

Russ Lowthian
Me-1_1.JPGIt happened so fast, one minute I am cruising at a modest speed onto a driveway apron to a bike trail enterance, the next thing I am laying on the pavement not sure what just occurred?  With an ambulance ride to the hospital, over the course of the next few hours I learned that I broke my right femur, just below the hip socket and would need surgery and a titanium rod implanted.  By mid-August I am antsy, sluggish and ready to join my friend on some scheduled bike rides. Thanks to a business associate I was able to get back in the saddle, with an electric assist bike.

I would like to thank Currie Tech for making one of their IZip Metro demo's available to me as I went through the rehabilitation process after breaking my hip.  With surgery out of the way, over the next six weeks I went from a walker, to crutches and then the use of an electric assist bike. This made it possible for me to resume my active lifestyle a couple months earlier than planned and back to my regular bike.

A few years earlier I had road tested a couple of different e-bikes, thinking all the while this is the lazy man's way of getting around.  However, after my mishap, I came to realize and appreciate the help the electric assist motor on the bike can give. It was my ticket back to an active living lifestyle as the healing process continued. I found that the IZip Metro's Variable Power Booster/ Tag Selector (PAS/TAG+ system) gave me several options for pedal powered assistance as my leg healed.

Now riding an e-bike, I felt no sin from my earlier beliefs and within a week of riding I was able join some friends. Not only was I riding with them, I was keeping up spinning as much as possible at first. It still hurt like heck to walk up hills, even the stairs. However, pedaling the bike up an elevated grade got easier and easier -with less of the motors assist. Eventually, in my case, I was able to resume riding my regular bike, with regained confidence.

Now, having had the opportunity to use an electric assist bicycle while dealing with a health issue, I want to recant my earlier Me_2.JPGviewpoint. For those who are in rehab - mending from a broken or replaced limb, torn ACL, recently had some cardiovascular work done, have arthritis or a lack of stamina from old age - an e-bike might be the winning ticket for staying active.  A form of bicycling that will allow more to maintain their strength, mobility and independence. For everyone else, the e-bike is a fun way to extend your distance and average speed. 

Looking at the latest models now available, with lithium batteries, the e-bikes have come a long way and worth checking out. Many brands are now available at numerous bike shops - A great place to check them out, have a bike fit to your needs and serviced, after your purchase.

Have Fun!   

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January 13, 2014