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You Need Your Knees

I still remember how I felt when I started out driving – bullet proof…. healthy, strong and full of energy.

Working a hard week, making good money I found satisfaction in my job as owner driver hauling heavy equipment.

Days turned to weeks, weeks turned to months, months turned to years and soon the years were slipping by and I hardly noticed it.

All went well, life was good. I kept within my limits.

But there’s something else going on…………….

Every day I was climbing around my trailer tying down loads….I had my clients best in mind, that’s why they keep coming back. I jump off the trailer and run around the other side, haul myself back up onto the deck and sort the last chain then launch myself off the side of the trailer to the ground again…Job done, lets hit the road.

One day, while I’m busy securing a piece of heavy equipment I notice a small pain in my left knee, its just under the kneecap. I’m in a hurry so just ignore it and get the job done.  It dies down and and I forget about it I begin the long haul from Vic to Qld.

As the months roll by the pain keeps popping its head back up. After a year its almost constant. I know I have a few more years of work ahead before that long-awaited retirement arrives but this pain is making things difficult. What is the go?

One night while parked up I search the internet for knee pains….. and an article on ‘jumper’s knee’ grabs my attention. I read it right through.

Slowly the realisation hits me………..i look back over the years of driving and do a quick calculation…

  • I have jumped out or off my truck 4 times a day for 20 years…
  • that’s easily of 20,000 hard impact to my joints.

Can I blame them for giving trouble? No!. Considering how little time and attention I have given my body they have actually done remarkably well.

I realise that this problem is not going to go away if I carry on like I have been. I have to treat it and make the best of the situation.  I do more research online.

Heres some of the things I found I needed to do:

  • I learn about the 3 point technique – see the video
  • I stop jumping off the deck when in a hurry.
  • I set a target to lose 10kg as I was overweight.
  • I start doing lower body stretches each morning before hitting the road.
  • I purchase tools that make my job easier.

5 years on I’m still trucking, my whole outlook has changed though. I’m taking care of my body.  I simply think about my knees when ever I’m working around my truck.

The knee pain has subsided and all but gone.

I’m well on my way to a long career as owner driver and looking forward to a healthy retirement.

Pete A.

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