Fitness and Health

An economic health statement from the Crip-circle of Extreme Skates Roller Derby. Some injuries are unavoidable (even with the use of wrist guards, elbow pads and knee pads) : breaks, muscle and ligament tears, twisted ankles/knees, and so on. But most injuries and their recoveries are manageable through extra fitness and cross-training, and doing so could save you money. Let me tell you of a recent experience. Last year I fractured my wrist, and this injury was unavoidable, although I could have done more to be aware of my body's capabilities and managed it better. I didn't do any recovery, beyond getting my hand and left arm to work properly, I just got back on the horse. My first contact session back, I sprained a tendon in my lower back – extreme amounts of pain, but I was lucky I didn't do anything more serious. I took time off skates for this injury, and again without any extra cross-training I went back to training. The session after this, I sprained a ligament in my shoulder... you're starting to see the theme here? Most recently, I've sprained a ligament in my left knee, and I am planning to manage this one properly! With all of my recent trips to the physio, plus the thera-bands, crutch hire, private healthcare (that make the physio consults cheaper) I could have paid for a gym membership and then some. I wouldn't have taken time off work to sit on the couch with an ice-pack to my knee every hour. Imagine all the time I could have saved, not having to lugg my broken self to the physio twice a week, plus then going to the gym for recovery or pool sessions. If I had signed myself up to PT who specialises in injury prevention and recovery last year, I could have already played in several games/scrims that I've had to miss. It kind of sucks feeling like the Harry Kewell of roller derby, because the only thing you want to do is get back to it ASAP, but sometimes your body runs slower than your enthusiasm. Word from the broken wise, cross-train: prepare ALL of your body for the risks and potential injuries that come with Roller Derby. Some injuries you won't be able to prevent, but by having stronger muscles in general they will stay stronger during an injury. When one muscle shuts down, the others have to compensate, so it helps if they are strong. Even if it's an hour in the pool each week, or a yoga session, or a run, everything and anything else helps. If you don't think you have the extra time for cross-training, you definitely don't have the extra time or money for injury management. by Anna Provost