One of our Unloader 1 clients sent us this really inspirational email this week. He’s happy for us to share it anonymously and it’s great to know that we’re helping people of all ages to get the maximum out of their lives. This gentleman certainly goes to the max and is an inspiration to us all.
When you fitted me with my second Unloader 1 in October 2011, you said that you would like to review my progress, so here are a few observations on their use since then:
As I commented then, the effect of the first Unloader 1 seemed to be that it had straightened the knee to its proper position, removing the pain in the process. The second one seems to have had the same effect, so that after a few weeks I could walk comfortably without wearing either of them.
A major test was my wedding last November, when I spent most of the day on my feet without the Unloader 1’s and without pain, though I was a bit tired next morning. Put that down to my 73 years! However, on our honeymoon in Cyprus I found that walking on a rocky, uneven path to the Baths of Aphrodite without the Unloader 1’s jarred them and caused the pain to return. Lesson learned – I now wear them whenever I anticipate jarring of the knees. However, this still means that most day to day activities do not require me to use them.
In February, our trip to New Zealand was, as you predicted, amazing. The Unloader 1’s came into their own walking down steep slopes, trekking to the Fox and Franz Joseph Glaciers, touring the thermal village at Rotorua, and especially descending the steep cliff path to beautiful Cathedral Cove in the Coromandel. (By then I was accustomed to wearing the Unloader 1’s whilst wearing shorts). I did not need them for mountain biking since the knees were not load bearing then. I also wore the braces at the airports to ease the pain of long corridors and even longer spent queuing. Apart from these activities, I spent the vast majority of the month sightseeing without them.
Since the Cyprus experience, I have worn the Unloader 1’s when playing golf and found them a great help and my knees have been pain free. Pity my golfing skills were not so effective! This week, however, I tried my first round of golf without the Unloader 1’s and found it most liberating and still pain free. (The golf, however, was not much improved).
All in all, the Unloader 1 braces have enabled me to keep involved in outdoor activities using them to protect the knee joints from jarring out of position where the risks were apparent. But most days, I do not need to wear them at all and I am optimistic that I may be able to leave them behind on my next round of golf too (in the knowledge that the braces always go with me in the car boot, just in case).
So, many thanks for an excellent pair of Unloader 1 braces which have been most effective and undoubtedly worthwhile. Current plans include motorhome tours of Arran, Kintyre and Islay in June (walking, cycling and golf), the Edinburgh Tattoo and my step-daughter’s wedding in Glasgow in August. September is earmarked for a motorhome tour of Northern Spain, with a week in the Lake District in October. I can now confidently enjoy the great outdoors again, even if Munro bagging is off the agenda.