Case Notes 4, Part 2 - Simon Crittenden

I have a minor leg length difference never identified by any physical trainer/coach, therapist or doctor in over six decades on the planet. Combined with progressively higher intensity athletic training throughout my 50's it culminated in a catastrophic lumbro-sacral injury that took several months to overcome. While the back injury healed sufficiently to resume training, stability issues with the knee became unmanageable and knocked me off the team. This was the beginning of a gradual decline in lower limb function. At times I walked like Frankenstein.

Two years ago a Reiki Master (trained in Japan, lineage four steps removed from Dr Usui) treated me several times. Each time reporting with surprise how much energy had to be directed to the legs. Each time legs would feel young again for several days but this would gradually wear off and Frankenstein would reappear. I might exaggerate but it was not good.

I now recognise lumbro-sacral and pelvic distortion and stress from the minor leg length difference compounded by the after affects of the low back injury had created a permanent energetic block. What commenced as a previously injured knee joint falling apart after the onset of back injury degenerated over the course of several years to a condition  characterised by poor mobility, acute knee pain, circulation issues, fluid retention, pain along bladder and kidney meridians...much time spent with legs up on couch during 2020 Lockdowns, work assignments becoming daunting, visions of mobility scooters, and at the worst, pain restricting walks to 200mtrs.

Extensive therapeutic treatment has been received over this last two years. All helpful but none of it really changing the status quo. Cleared of DVT by the GP. Extensive TCM herbal and acupuncture treatment for circulation, kidneys, joints, lower back & knee injury, regular Chiropractic for back, neck and lower limbs. Intense Thai massage since lockdown restrictions lifted.

It was not until I recognised something must be done to relieve the onging niggles in the lumbro-sacral area and inserted an adjusting 5mm heel lift under my right foot that hope returned. Immediately the knee injury that ended my cycling career began to feel like it was healing. I began to feel legs and feet energetically...I can "breath" into them again. Overall condition continues to improve dramatically. I am so confident I have purchased a mountain bike to commence training on the fire trails through the local forest...if it is meant to be, I may even become strong enough to begin road riding once again.

Pictured: The time trial bike running 145psi tubulars on which I frequently did the 17kms from Black Rock to Albert Park (preceded by 1hr warmup) at between 45kph and 60kph...if winded, recovery pace was 38kph for a few moments. Training for this sprint included regular training rides between 50km and 90km with the odd 150km effort. The sprint was the favourite and would have me pumped for the day. Resting HR in the 40's. Maximum HR 184. Age late 50's.

Best ever sprint performance (if you can call 17kms a sprint)...paceline pursuit with two a retired AFL player, one ex-Olympic track & field sprinter...the entire distance was covered in top two gears, wattage did not drop below 450W, wind assisted average speed greater than 50kph.

First published 24 March 2021 on