Hi everyone! Before I get into sharing the below content, I want to extend my sincerest wishes for an inspiring and happy holiday season. Thank you for your support throughout the years. So…with that done…many of you have asked me about driving a stick shift after a tkr ( aka total knee replacement). I believe it is worthy to share a prior post where I discuss my personal experience about this topic. Enjoy…and stay safe…
Driving a stick is fun, challenging, and keeps a driver in better control of a vehicle when compared to an automatic transmission. However, what is it like to drive a stick shift after a tkr? I had that chance…
First of all, it is important to mention that I learned how to drive on a stick shift. Even though my friend/driving instructor turned into a chain smoker..I enjoyed the challenge and control. It gave me a far greater appreciation for the driving task and the marvels of an automobile. I loved it and still do to this day!
There is far better control of the vehicle in conditions involving inclement weather…like snow, ice, heavy rains, etc. Driving a stick means the driver determines when the car shifts to the next level, not a computer chip or other device that the driver has no control over.
My initial learning experience was 40+ years ago, though. What would it be like now that I have a tkr on my left leg, the leg used to engage the clutch pedal? Would I be able to drive the vehicle? Would I remember how to coordinate the clutch with the gear shift? It would be interesting.
At first, I was admittedly scared and very curious. I wasn’t sure whether my tkr leg would bend enough to handle the shifting. I envisioned blowing up an engine or gasket at the very least. My confidence was questionable. So…I took the car on a test run around the parking lot. Multiple times to gain confidence, mind you.
I engaged the clutch, put the car into first, put the key into the ignition, turned the ignition key, and slowly started moving. I maneuvered the car out of the parking space, made right and left hand turns, came to stop signs, applied the brakes, started moving, and made it back home.
I even utilized reverse without hitting anything. I pulled into parking spaces without crashing into anything. IT WAS A BLAST!! Whew! I did this for two days before venturing out into the “real” world.
I was amazed about how the entire process of driving a stick after a tkr was similar to riding a bike. No one had to tell me anything, it just came back to me. How nice…:)
As I started driving in traffic, I noticed that utilizing the clutch one stop light after another was becoming tiring. I never realized how much the leg is exercising while performing this maneuver.
The process seemed to trigger the neuropathy left from my removed bone spurs. (I have written about the neuropathy in other posts…) In hindsight, that is probably one reason I was so tired the remaining day and night.
Still…I would do it again in a heart beat. I love the sound of gears shifting, motors revving up, and knowing I have that control. Long live manual transmissions…aka stick shifts!
Does anyone else have stories to share about driving a stick (manual transmission) after a tkr? We want to hear them!
Hope this tkr blog post helps others going through the same thing.
Find my tkr blog post about driving a stick shift after a tkr (aka total knee replacement) interesting? Kindly share…Thanks!
AUTHOR NOTE: Booktoots’ Healing helps total knee replacement patients find support throughout recuperation and beyond. Its mission is for patients to understand they are not alone in their ordeal with either a tkr or variety of other health concerns.
This multiple award-winning tkr blogging site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author, tkr blogger, and tkr patient who has been living with various health conditions for over 40+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.
Marie is also a proud WEGO Health Patient Leader. https://www.wegohealth.com. NOTE: This url will be changing effective January 1, 2022.