I've worked with quite a few injured athletes this past couple of weeks and the sessions have been reminding me of the stresses I dealt with 5 years ago when I herniated 2 disks in my lower back. I fought the reality of the situation until a good friend of mine reinforced the need to go back to basics and essentially learn to move all over again. It took ages to get things right, but years later, I have very few symptoms and can manage things that I never thought I would be able to do again. The athletes who are facing the injuries that I have seen this past week are at that tricky spot where they need to face the reality of how to work through an injury. It takes more than just dealing with the pain. You need to figure out what else can be done to create improvement and you also need to work on the healthy components of your fitness and make them even better. I will hopefully help them see the light.
My life-saver lesson comes from a trail run that I did on Sunday. The route that I decided to take through Gould Lake was insane. It had rocks, roots, moss, drop offs and crazy ups and downs. On one of the easiest parts of the trail, I went over on my right ankle. The exercises that I have been doing in the weight room became my life savers. I reacted quickly enough to pull myself straight and not completely wreck my ankle. Phew! When I trained this morning, I didn't feel the same frustration that I sometimes do with the picky little exercises and movements. All of this goes back to the one conversation I had with a friend when I was in the midst of recovering from my back injury. I'm hoping that my relatively young and injury inexperienced athletes can get the point before it's too late.