Local High Jumper Comes Back Strong After ACL Surgeries

Ross VanZanten saved the best for last.

The 2008 Mark Morris graduate recently completed his track and field career at Washington State University. In January, he recorded a personal best by clearing 6’ 9 7/8” in the high jump and bettered that in May with a leap of 6’ 11” during a meet at the University of Idaho.

Mark Morris grad Ross VanZanten

VanZanten’s performance is especially remarkable because it followed two significant ACL (anterior cruciate ligament) surgeries.

“I tore up my left knee during basketball my freshman year in high school and the right one while running the hurdles as a junior.”

VanZanten had broken the Mark Morris high jump record by clearing 6’ 8 ¼” in 2007, but was unable to compete at district or state because of the injury to his right knee. He bounced back to win the state high jump title his senior year.

In both instances, VanZanten was treated by Dr. Bruce Blackstone of Longview Orthopedic Associates. And in both instances, he was able to return to peak performance following successful surgery.

“I never had any problems with either of my knees after Dr. Blackstone worked on them,” VanZanten said. “I was especially happy that he decided to use hamstring grafts because I felt like that would have the least effect on my jumping.”

VanZanten was also impressed with Blackstone’s approach. “He was definitely aware of the athlete’s perspective and was focused on getting me back to where I could perform at a very high level.”

Blackstone said that VanZanten’s situation is an excellent example of the convenient and comprehensive services available at Pacific Surgical Institute. “Ross was able to receive his orthopedic care (Longview Orthopedic Associates), his MRI (Pacific Imaging Center), and his physical therapy (Longview Physical & Sports Therapy) at the same location.”

Click here to watch a video of ACL reconstruction narrated by Dr. Blackstone.

Blackstone graduated from R.A. Long High School and Stanford University before earning his medical degree at the University of Washington. He returned to Longview in 1983 to found Longview Orthopedic Associates. In 2007, he was one of the first 500 doctors in the U.S. to receive sub-specialty certification in sports medicine from the American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery.

  • National Orthopedic Imaging Associates
  •  American College of Radiology
  • American Board of Magnetic Resonance Safety
  • The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT)
  • SMRT Logo