HOW TO DEAL WITH A SPORTS INJURY
PUT YOUR FUTURE FIRST. DON’T THINK SHORT TERM
You are having a great season on the sporting field when suddenly you have to deal with a sprained ankle or a torn ligament in your knee. It’s not a season ending injury, but you will miss several weeks you weren’t planning on missing. How do you respond and what do you do?
Can you bear the pain and continue to play knowing you are not 100%? Should you take the full rehabilitation time only to miss numerous weeks of the already short playing season? Your pain tolerance is high, but you realize exactly how swollen your ankle or knee is. You hate the isolation from your team and you feel like you let your teammates down. You truly feel helpless. What do you do?
First and foremost you have to think about your future both with athletics and without. Look at the possibility of full recovery with you being able to pick up where you left off or taking little time to get back to where you left off. With proper recovery you are less likely to injure the same body part again and you will be better able to do all your sport skills without pain.
Also you need to look twenty to thirty years down the road and think about the fact that you want to be able to lead a fairly normal daily life. If you don’t rehabilitate correctly now it could effect your ability to function later on in life. That knee or ankle will more than likely always give you some problems. Note, with some injuries you will always have recurring problems, but the more care you take in proper rehabilitation the better.
The other alternative is rushing your recovery time only to be in pain the rest of the season or the rest of your career. You could possibly get a more serious injury because you did not give your previous injury adequate rest and rehabilitation.
If a coach or trainer is rushing you to come back to participation, this is the time to sit down and talk about how you feel and do you think you are ready.
Could your early return possibly hurt the team performance rather than help because you are not completely 100%? Open communication between you, your coach, your trainer or doctor, and your parents will make the rehabilitation process a lot less stressful. Yes, there is the question of being tough and dealing with pain, but is the pain worth the pain later on in your career and in your life?