Top South African cyclist Bradley Potgieter is well on the road to recovery after breaking his right femur in a freak accident two weeks ago.
The 30-year-old was out on his normal training loop around Randfontein when he hit a bump in the road and his hand slipped, which led to him falling awkwardly.
He knew the moment he hit the ground that there was something broken as he could not move nor unclip his foot from the bike.
“I was lying in the middle of the road. Luckily I sent a live tracker to my girlfriend Kathryn so when it happened she could send the ambulance to my location.”
Potgieter said he waited about two and a half hours for them to arrive.
“During this time no one stopped to help. Eventually, after I don’t know how long, someone who lived close to where I crashed came out to wait with me.
“He seemed quite disinterested in the whole thing though, so that was quite traumatic as well. I was also in and out of consciousness because of the pain and due to hitting my head.”
Potgieter was taken to the Netcare Milpark Hospital. Upon arrival he was assessed by way of a full body scan.
“They saw my broken femur and broken nose. My leg was then put into traction.
“Katie and I decided to wait until the Friday so we could see a specific doctor who did the surgery that afternoon. I was in ICU from the Wednesday until the Saturday evening.”
He said he felt stressed from the Wednesday of the accident until they did the surgery because he did not know how bad it was or how long the recovery period would be.
“All I wanted to know was that I could walk again. The bike didn’t even enter the picture at that time – walking was the most important.
“After surgery I started coming right and there was big progress. The Saturday I could sit up, Sunday I stood up and Monday I walked to the door of the room. The Tuesday I started doing ward walks, on the Wednesday a flight of stairs and I was discharged on August 8.”
The Cycle Power rider said all the staff and doctors at the hospital, as well as his physiotherapist, friends and family had helped keep him motivated during this time.
“I’ve now been given the go-ahead to get on the indoor trainer again, but I’m just going to take it slow. I think the worst thing I could do now is to overdo it.
“I’ll also take some time to focus on the coaching I want to do at B-Power. That will also get me motivated to tackle the bike again.”
Apart from this challenge, Potgieter has also been suffering with arthritis in his left sacroiliac joint (where the spine joins the hip bones) and bursitis on his left hip.
“So now that my right femur is broken, my sacroiliitis and bursitis on my left side is taking strain.
“I’m on medication for that, so that is just another challenge I need to get past now.”