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Steve Kaiser

Hawi, HI

For the last 15 to 20 years I have been unable to walk without pain. Age and a history of a wide range of sports and surgeries had taken its toll. And yet 9 years ago I took up the sport of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. Knowing that my knee was in bad shape I was still able to progress up thru white, blue, purple and brown belts. All the time competing and sometimes medaling in competitions across the globe. However a major flare up with excruciating pain was enough to convince me to that the time had come to take care of this. This was a major blow as I was hoping to not just compete but to get my black belt later in the year. As an older guy time becomes a real issue. And then came my concern that I would have to give up a sport I love and that my life would forever change and probably not for the best.

I interviewed 4 surgeons and was really not satisfied. Most of them had no idea of what BJJ was but all said no and that my life would have to change. I was also very aware that the options of devices available was very broad and yet they all insisted that the ones they did were the best regardless of life styles. So looking around and internet searches I kept on seeing HSS and looking at the range of physicians I picked Dr. Sculco and scheduled a phone interview. To my surprise after sending him my files he not only had reviewed them in advance he actually looked at BJJ. He had some reservations but assured me that the device he chose would allow me to live not just an active life but a better life with few if any limitations. So BJJ was on and so was the surgery

I'm a firm believer in prehab so while my knee was essentially blown (all doctors in seeing my x-rays could not believe I could even walk) I did all I could to get as much muscle and strength in before the surgery. The staff and care made the surgery a lot easier then I was imagining. Rehab? I'm not the kind of guy to sit back and take it easy. So yeah I may have scared a few people in the Physio Therapy with my grunting, groaning, sweating and yes a bit of swearing. But within days I was walking without a cane thanks to Jay Mizuta and the physio staff. They pushed me hard and it was what I needed. Within two months I returned to light workouts on the mats and steadily increased my training with little if any limitations which culminated in receiving my black belt six months after surgery. It was not always without pain and no small mental feat as I did worry if I was going all wrong. But today I'm now thinking about competing again, I can walk forever with no pain and can sit cross-legged. Life is good and it's better then ever!