MTN Town Magazine Colorado - Summer 2013

Page 20

Wellness & Recovery

PHOTO CREDIT: Vail Summit Orthopedics

Dr. Erik Dorf of Vail Summit Orthopedics discusses injury and rehabilitation with Sydney Fox.


Vail Valley native, Erik Dorf is an orthopedic surgeon for Vail-Summit Orthopedics, as well as an avid skier and competitive cyclist, which influences how he interacts with his patients. He often chooses active rehabilitation that allows his patients to keep doing their sports, rather than invasive surgery. MTN Town Magazine caught up with him to talk injury prevention, especially as athletes transition between winter and summer sports. On overuse injuries: As a result of living in the mountains, nature forces us to participate in sports seasonally,


which helps prevent overuse injuries. Luckily, many avid mountain bikers also ride on the road. There is very 99% of overuse injuries are very little grip involved with road cycling, specific to one activity. Because of so it gives the tennis elbow a break, that, patients who have a specific while allowing cyclists to still ride. overuse injury from a sport change seasons and give the injury a rest. The counter side to that is that In the winter, we see many patients athletes in the mountains are very with patella femoral pain from adept at developing strength in downhill skiing, which creates a muscles, but they don’t necessarily lot of jarring and force across the create strength in tendons and patella. As long as those people joints. Early season conditioning transition to cycling, and not running, should focus on strengthening those they naturally rehab the injury tendons, ligaments and the soft because cycling strengthens the tissue around the joints. weak skiing muscle. In the summer, many mountain bikers get tennis On preventing injuries while elbow from gripping their bars. changing sports: Cycling provides

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