Here at Beacon, patients measure their success by getting back to the life they love. For some, that means being able to swim again, get back in the office, or even learn to walk again. For Carl Prather, it means maintaining a lifestyle of martial arts.
Prather, 71, has been a karate instructor for over 30 years. He also served in the marines until 1973, and worked in a factory for almost four decades. Over time he has sustained wear-and-tear injuries to both knees, causing excruciating pain for the past five years of his life. A pain that almost took away his favorite title – Sensei Prather. After hearing Dr. Chaudhary’s success stories from multiple friends and family members, he decided it was time to help his knees in whatever way he could.
Last July, Carl got his right knee replaced. By November, his left knee needed replacing too. Sustaining two total knee replacements, Carl was worried he would never get back to teaching the art he loved, karate. Having been the owner of Prather Martial Arts since 1996, this was a passion he could not give up.
“I can’t sit still. I refuse to buckle up.”
Karate is an outlet for him. In his studio he can sweat, and be active. But the biggest reward by far, he claims, has been watching his students progress.
“Karate is an art, a lifestyle. It is a lifestyle of discipline and respect.”
Over the years, he’s watched countless students, including his own sons and grandchildren, grow into men and women of deference, with resilient self defense skills. This, to him, has been the greatest gift.
After his surgeries, he knew that if he wanted to continue teaching, he needed to do whatever he could to get better and recover. After a few months of physical therapy and strictly following Doctors’ orders, Carl was back to a life he hadn’t experienced in years – a life free of pain.
To this day, he has never given up on teaching traditional Okinawan Karate at his school. Prior to his surgeries, he was pushing and straining his knees to keep up with his love for martial arts. Since his procedures he’s been able to practice and teach again, using various moves such as the front kick (Mae Geri) and roundhouse kick (Mawashi Geri), completely pain free. In addition to martial arts, Carl has been able to get back into kayaking and fishing. He has even taken on a new hobby of hiking. He recently completed a 6.5 mile hike, his favorite hike being in Miamisburg. His wife, who also had her knee replaced by Dr. Chaudhary, has enjoyed getting back to her daily walks with their family dog.
Carl advises anybody who wants to get back to a life they love to follow through with surgery, find a specialized Doctor, and firmly follow instructions in order to recover.
“Therapy is the key to getting better. The recovery process is worth it to stay active and get back to life without pain.”