Inspiring recovery stories: the 70 year old BMX bike racer
Updated: Oct 18, 2021
Who says undergoing physical rehabilitation has to be discouraging? In the following posts we will share the most inspiring stories of patients who found the opposite to be true - their experiences only fired up their competitive spirits. What's their secret?? read to the end and find out
The story of Kittie Weston-Knauer: the 70-year-old BMX bike racer who had returned racing after having a double hip and double knee replacement.
Frustration: About seven years ago, after 20 years of bike racing, the pain in Kittie's knees and hips started to become more and more unbearable, Kittie got feared for being sidelined by that pain. She was struggling to walk. Even sleeping became uncomfortable. After multiple MRIs, it was clear she needed hip and knee replacements — on both sides. When she told the doctors she was 63 and wanting to get back to bike racing as soon as possible, they told her she was too old to race and needed to stop competing. Finally, she found a surgeon who was committed to helping her get back to racing, with as little downtime as possible.
Recovery: Kittie was on a mission to race in a national bike race championship just six months after her last knee surgery, so she took rehab very seriously and asked her physical therapists for as many exercises as they’d give, and recovered remarkably well.
Overcoming: For years, Kittie was afraid that having joint replacements would set her back. But, in the end, her surgeries actually fired her up even more. During rehab, she'd often ask herself: So you’re down, but are you out? And then she'd quickly answer: You’re never out. You can always come back in; it’s how you come back in that really matters. She promised herself she'd get back to the top, and she did.
Kattie just turned 70 and is training for another world championship. People often ask her how she accomplished her recovery and why she still races. The simple answer is that she love's it. She simply wanted to return doing what she loves most.