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Author Topic: Bowling injuries (Read 1463 times)


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Bowling injuries
on: May 18, 2017, 11:33:02 AM
I'm faced with having to make a decison on undergoing hip replacement surgery.

My reason is that I've bowled essentially on one leg since returning to bowling in 2014 (after not picking up a ball in any capacity since spring 1996.) I've managed the pain thus far with exercise, stretching, weights, the use of a hip/groin brace, and ibuprofen.

The surgery would involve my left hip (slide leg). While I'm aware that people have returned to bowling after this kind of a procedure, I'm not aware of any who are scratch bowlers who bowl in PBA regional or national events or scratch events that attract bowlers at the local, regional, or national level. And that's my biggest concern.

It would seem to me that opting for this surgery might be the kiss of death. It would seem I'm better off not bowling -- again. But I am getting tired of bowling in pain, which at times is so much that I think a person with a lower threshold would pass out.

Based on material I've researched so far, bowling is an accepted activity according hip surgeons. But none of the material say bowling at a higher level of competition is allowed. It appears it's merely accepted for the casual bowler or non-competitive league hack.

Anyone has heard or read otherwise? Anyone knows of someone who's had hip replacement and managed to return and bowl at a higher level of competition? (I'm aware of Randy Pedersen bowling in some PBA 50 events -- and winning one -- after knee replacement.)
Last Edit: May 18, 2017, 03:38:54 PM by spencerwatts
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Re: Bowling injuries
Reply #1 on: May 18, 2017, 11:49:28 AM
I have an older friend who had both hips replaced and he bowls better now than he ever did. He isn't a PBA bowler, but does have a 200+ average(THS) now, which he was never able to do before.

And a word of warning, ibuprofen can be brutal on your kidneys with long term use at higher doses.
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Re: Bowling injuries
Reply #2 on: May 18, 2017, 12:58:12 PM
Unless you bowl for a living, making a quality of life decision based on bowling is crazy.


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Re: Bowling injuries
Reply #3 on: May 18, 2017, 01:01:42 PM
Unless you bowl for a living, making a quality of life decision based on bowling is crazy.

I agree
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Re: Bowling injuries
Reply #4 on: May 18, 2017, 02:44:41 PM
Let's assume that if it causes pain to bowl, then you might have pain doing many other physical activities.  If not now, then later as things in the current hip deteriorate further. 

As we age, physical activity becomes more important, in my opinion, because the alternative is usually sitting in front of the TV too long, putting on extra weight, and a multitude of other ailments that are made worse by inactivity. 

This seems like a "quality of life decision" first and foremost.  If you have the surgery, and are diligent with the rehab, you are likely to be pain free for many years, which could very well include bowling. 

One other aspect, is that if you are away from bowling for 6 months, or whatever, you will probably appreciate it more when you return.  Three years ago I endured a major shoulder reconstruction, and I was "out" for 5-6 months, but really a whole year before I had the confidence that the repair was strong, etc. 

My outlook has "mellowed" considerably after that, and as I grow older.  I really like to bowl.  I don't take it for granted that I will do it forever anymore.  I try to do the small things like stretching and warming up so I don't have to go through it all again.
I suspect that you will enjoy it more than ever if you are unable to compete for awhile.  Either way, we wish you the best in your decision. 
Last Edit: May 18, 2017, 09:43:29 PM by notclay
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Re: Bowling injuries
Reply #5 on: May 18, 2017, 03:18:33 PM
I see these THR pt almost everyday. Outcomes differ from PT to PT for many reasons . But post op complications can be none to chronic, minor to extreme (rare). yet pt feel better overall with the new hip vs. the old damage one. I've never had a pt tell me, "I wish I never went through this surgery" in the years working with ortho/rad....

Knee replacements for example, pt walk out the next day or stay for a week longer. It just depends on many things. There was a 73 y/o male who walked out the next day. Then a much young male who stayed 4 days in the hospital for some reason. Just depends but the rewards are greater than the risks.

Either ppl opt out of surgery and live the rest of their lives in chronic pain, or go through THR and have a higher percentage of living a normal pain free, active life. I golfed with a good player who had more drive than I did and who was 17 years my senior who had bilateral knees replaced and hip.

A bowler at leagues had knee replacement before the holiday season and came back a month later or so and returned to bowling.

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Re: Bowling injuries
Reply #6 on: May 18, 2017, 08:15:05 PM
I have two friends locally who have had hip replacement and returned to bowling.

One was in his early 60's with little tolerance for pain. It took him a couple of years but now he is bowling about as well as he did before surgery. He was a higher level scratch bowler in the area and averages around 210 on a house shot now and will soon be 70.

The other is a USBC national hall of fame member and eagle winner. He came back much sooner and was bowling well 6 months after surgery. He has also had a knee replacement since then. On house shots he normally will average in the 230's. His last trip to nationals he shot 1800 in all events I believe. He also is 70 years old.

So you can recover and bowl as well as ever. How long depends on how hard you want to rehab.
Last Edit: May 18, 2017, 10:03:32 PM by Pinbuster


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Re: Bowling injuries
Reply #7 on: May 19, 2017, 11:06:33 AM
Have 2 friends who have had hip replacements
One is on my bowling team and had it done in early summer, missed 6 weeks of our golf league, and was back to bowling that fall. He was in late 50's when he had it done.
Second is my brother in-law, not a bowler, had his done few years ago during winter, recovered and was back to his job in spring as a landscaper with no problems.
Both guys have been very happy and say it was best decision they could have made.


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Re: Bowling injuries
Reply #8 on: May 22, 2017, 10:16:56 AM
Unless you bowl for a living, making a quality of life decision based on bowling is crazy.

Not entirely sure I agree with that...quality of life decisions also take into account what sort of life you get to have AFTER that decision.  In some instances, it could be a situation where the replacement makes the pain go away but the individual is utterly miserable due to limitations on what can and cannot be done in the wake of the surgery. 

If bowling is an integral part of one's life, even if just the social life, one is foolish NOT to consider the impact when weighing ALL of the elements of surgery and recovery.