The Ride: Danniflex 400i Continuous Passive Motion Machine |

The Ride: Danniflex 400i Continuous Passive Motion Machine

Seth Lightcap
Seth Lightcap/Sierra Sun

What is the Danniflex used for?

The Danniflex is a physical therapy machine used to maintain the range of motion of your knee while you recover from surgery. It moves the leg back and forth in a slow, controlled and continuous pattern. By healing in a state of motion it speeds the recovery process and prevents your knee from fusing.

What did you do to your knee?

I tore the hyaline cartilage on the end of my femur snowboarding on Mt. Shasta in December. A week ago I had micro fracture surgery at Tahoe Orthopedic Institute to clean it up and stimulate the growth of new scar tissue and cartilage.

How soon after surgery did you start using the Danniflex?

I strapped into the Danniflex the same day I had surgery. I used it for a couple of hours that night on 20-minute intervals.

How often do you use it now?

I’m up to about three hours a day at 30-minute intervals. I’ll use it for four weeks. By the end I’ll be in it for six hours a day. After four weeks I won’t have to use the machine because I’ll be able to exercise the joint by putting a little weight on it using crutches.

What motion variables can you control?

There are settings for flexion, extension and speed. Flexion is how high it goes and extension is how low it goes. I started at zero degrees for extension and 30 degrees for flexion, but I’m up to 45 degrees for flexion now. I’ll slowly work up to 90 degrees for flexion.

Is it painful?

I have momentary twinges of pain that make me want to jump out of the machine, but I use it as much as I can stand it. It will be better in the long run.

Can you use it for other types of knee injuries?

I would assume it would be good for other cartilage injuries but I really don’t know. I talked to another guy who used it on a similar injury that was twice as bad as mine and he thought it worked great. He’s still skiing anyway.

Did you buy it?

No, I rent it for $25 dollars a day.

“The Sierra Sun’s Seth Lightcap conducted this week’s Ride of the Week interview and photo shoot. Send future interview suggestions to

Support Local Journalism


Support Local Journalism

Readers around Lake Tahoe, Truckee, and beyond make the Sierra Sun's work possible. Your financial contribution supports our efforts to deliver quality, locally relevant journalism.

Now more than ever, your support is critical to help us keep our community informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having locally. Every contribution, however large or small, will make a difference.

Your donation will help us continue to cover COVID-19 and our other vital local news.