Continuing our series of trainee interviews, today’s trainee is Ross Beard, an accountant from Essex. Ross regularly trains with Chris in person, which has helped him recover from debilitating knee injuries. His case study shows how you can return from barely walking to competing in sporting competitions.
1. What problems did / do you have with your knees?
Whilst playing football I suffered a ruptured anterior cruciate ligament. Eventually, after misdiagnosis and long waiting lists, I had the ligament reconstructed using a hamstring graft. I suffered extreme muscle atrophy in both legs, my knee did not feel stable, I continued to limp, I started to experience problems with other parts of my body and remained very cautious when doing physical activity.
2. How well did you understand what was wrong with you?
I knew that my muscles were weak and suspected that other problems I had started to experience, such as soreness in my opposite hip, were consequential to imbalances in my movements. I was, however, led to believe that this was just how things would be after such reconstructive surgery.
3. How were you told to deal with it?
Initially I was doing simple balance and body weight exercises given to me by the NHS physiotherapist. When I became impatient with these seemingly ineffective exercises I paid to see two separate physiotherapists. One of these gave me similar exercises to the NHS physiotherapist plus some others using a large elastic band and a Swiss ball and some football-specific fartlek training. The other put me on a course of deep tissue massage.
4. What were the results?
I found that my legs improved very little in strength over this period, and my hip problem worsened after the fartlek training. I also started to lose hope having spent lots of money and achieved little in the way of results.
5. How did you find out about us?
I was working with Chris and complaining about my knee problems as I so often found myself doing. He told me that he thought he could help and invited me to his gym for an assessment and leg exercise session.
6. How did our advice compare with what you already knew?
Initially Chris showed me how to practice basic exercises such as sissy squats. He studied and corrected my form with precision that left me amazed by his understanding of my problems and how I needed to adjust my technique. The advice was very specific and practised hands on. Because of the speed at which I started to feel improvements I soon became completely confident in everything Chris did with me. I had not felt such confidence in the advice I received from anybody else.
7. What were the results?
After a few weeks of seeing Chris, the progression in the strength of my legs really began to accelerate. I moved on to the most advanced forms of those early exercises, and then moved on to weight training exercises such as conventional squatting and dead lifts. The perfect form that Chris has taught me has resulted in me increasing the weights lifted with every session for many months. I am now squatting heavier weights than I have ever been able to, even before the injury. My quadriceps and hamstrings have developed to such an extent that you can see the physical changes and I am confident in performing any movement in any activity.
8. How do you feel about your condition now?
The muscles in my legs are as strong as they have ever been, in some respects stronger. I have played some football without any muscular or stability problems. I have, however, decided to ditch the football in favour of non contact exercise which includes long distance running and continued weight training with Chris.
Ross Beard is a trainee accountant from Essex who has been a keen participant in a number of sports since a very early age. In the blink of an eye he went from captaining his University’s football team and exercising every day to having problems just walking. After training with Chris, he is now planning to complete his first competitive half marathon with a view to developing his distance running.