Veteran racing cyclist riding again after traumatic brain injury

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Graham Charlton was 63 when he involved in a collision with a car. He was out cycling in March 2015, training for races coming up that summer. He has no recollection of the accident. The last thing he remembers was seeing a group of riders ahead and then waking up in Preston Hospital a couple of weeks later.

Graham had suffered extensive injuries including a broken tibia and fibula, ruptured cruciate ligaments in his knees, a broken back and neck, a laceration to his neck and a traumatic brain injury.

Miraculously within a year Graham was back cycling, and not only that but on a training camp in Majorca. He and his doctors put this down to his application of determination and his previous fitness.

Whilst still in a neck brace he was unable to cycle so instead relied on walking everyday and doing some rowing. Once his neck brace as off he was able to set up a static bike in his living room, going from strength to strength.

Due to his brain injury his balance was impaired and Graham was fearful of falling off when he did eventually get out again on a bike outside. So he went to a closed circuit and within two laps his feeling of unsteadiness had disappeared.

Both his physios at the hospital and locally relished the opportunity to work with someone who was determined not only to get limited mobility back but someone who wanted to exceed medical expectations.

Graham says it was important to his recovery that he knew the difference between good and bad pain whilst rehabilitating. As an athlete he already knew his body well and what it could or couldn’t take. Along with an extremely positive metal attitude he was able to be riding again in less than a year after his accident.

Read the full article here.

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