Tuesday, 30 July 2013

All for a footballers knees

I was at the Hypermobility Syndrome Association's family fun day at 'The Village' Elstree (near Stanmore) on Friday.

That bit of the day was both fun and tiring. And I hope the parents and families who attended found it useful.

One highlight was the Spanish football team Rayo Vallecano de Madrid turning up to use the room next door - fighting their way past the crowd of hyper children and the enthusiastic kids entertainer.

So far, so good. Right up to when a group of us HMSA staff were having dinner.

Then it all went surreal.

I kid you not.

"Hannah, look at his knees Hannah, look!" Yes Donna, they are hypermobile.

And as the poor innocent footballer turns to leave, up leaps Donna, Senior Medical Liaison Officer: "Can we have a photo of your knees - I'm not interested in you, I just want your knees."

Seriously? I mean, it's not exactly the best chat-up line!

Awkward moment of complete bewilderment, while slightly embarrassed interpreter tries to explain what this mad English woman wants.

Fortunately the interpreter had asked Jeff (membership secretary) what our event was, so he knew a bit about the HMSA and the work it does - which may have prevented a call to the police and eviction from said restaurant.

He agreed. Within seconds 2 of the most senior members of the HMSA team were kneeling on the floor in the Hotel restaurant taking photos of the knees of a Spanish footballer. "Shorts up a bit please".

I have never seen such bewilderment. Nor heard such a random request.

As the reality of what they'd just done sank in, we laughed until we cried.

In the gym the next morning, with no interpreter present, who should I meet....KNEES! We grinned sheepishly at each other and pretended last night never happened.

Then who turns up half an hour later at breakfast?


(I wasn't stalking him. I was there first.)

But on a serious note, those knees are going to help explain that hypermobility doesn't automatically mean disability, that with exercise and good management many hypermobile people can still be fit and active.

Whether I will get to a stage where I don't need a wheelchair is unknown, but what I do know is that I am fit and healthy - and make it a priority to stay so through exercise, pacing, and poise (active good posture) - ensuring I give my bendy body the best chance I can.


  1. I love it! To remember someone as "knees" very funny.


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