Faulty Sensory Awareness

Posted by Jeanne Barrett on April 15, 2009 in Uncategorized

After a far more optimistic visit with my knee surgeon today, my leg brace was adjusted to allow 60 degrees of knee flexion.  Now, this does not mean that I can immediately bend my knee to 60 degrees!  The muscles, tendons and ligaments have been in forced full flexion or near full flexion for two months.  The nerves to these areas are barely firing from non-use.  However, even after even a few hours with increased flexion, neural-muscular connections are being made, more bend is occurring and an increased awareness of my knee in motion is registering on my overall awareness.

It is a huge relief to have a more moveable leg.  I do notice that I have to very consciously direct my left knee to move forward to its fully allowed flexion, as full extension has become a strongly held habit after 8 weeks.  The previous pain of even slight flexion haunts me, so that I am still reacting as though my knee hurts when it bends even though it is not truly currently hurting.  This is an excellent experiential example of faulty sensory awareness.  Over and over, I have to direct the knee forward and then inhibit reacting as though pain is the result.  In essence, I refuse to pull down to send my knee forward.

I will have two weeks to renew my use of self with this amount of flexion (I have time to send my knee forward without pulling down), then the brace goes away (gasp!!!) and my strength in good use becomes my overall support, as it has been even with the brace.  As stabilization (the brace) decreases, my intent is that my elastic response increases, so that I am supported, even as I recover, with a balance of tone that yields an integrity of form.

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