Following my post about motivation, it seems perfect that I have suffered an injury lately. How does that seem perfect? Well, let me explain:
My motivation post was focused on not only skating but cross-training. Getting up and going for a run, or swim or yoga class or anything OTHER than skating. This is important because moving and exercising your body and mind in different ways helps to keep you on top of your game and prevents injuries.
Since I have recently been suffering from a lack of motivation to get out and cross-train, I am now paying the price.
During the on-skates warm-up at practice a few weeks ago I was skating along in a pace line with my team mates when suddenly I felt this sort of “twang” in my lower back. There was no ‘out of the ordinary’ movement… I didn’t fall, nobody hit me…I was just skating along, trying to keep proper form and “TWANG”, something weird happened.
The best way I can describe it as if my spine were the fingerboard of a guitar and suddenly one of the guitar strings just snapped, and went curling downwards, from my lower back right into the bottom of my left foot.
Being one to preach but never follow my own sermon, I continued to skate that practice, occasionally making comments to my team mates about how “weird” my back had felt, and that my left leg was sore. FACEPALM.
Listen to your bodies’ people! When weird shit happens: STOP MOVING and START ICING.
Anyways, not only did I finish that practice, but I went home and did my evening sit-ups and push-ups and kept up my usual activities for another 7 days. When I realized the pain in my leg wasn’t going anywhere I thought, hmmmm, maybe NOW I should have it checked out….and yep, I was in rough shape.
Apparently I have a herniated disc. Treatment involves no physical activity which may result in moving, twisting, or bending at my lower back. So at the moment, there are a lot of things I can’t do…including skate. Treatment also involves patience and accountability (both being huge weaknesses for me in regards to my body).
On the positive side, I am learning about what I CAN do (swimming, planks, push-ups are still okay) and may have to be more creative in what I do right now to stay in shape. Talking to other skaters and athletes who have experienced similar injuries has also been extremely beneficial in terms of providing me with ideas to keep me active as well helping me remain positive that I’ll be back skating sooner than later.
I know I wrote something similar to this post about 4 or 5 months ago when I injured myself during a bout and decided to ignore the pain in favor of continuing to skate. Please learn from me (and make this at least somewhat worthwhile, as I seem to never learn) and listen to yourselves. Cross-training is so important because injuries like mine can result from doing repetitive movements/exercises, such as skating low and just trying to maintain proper form at practice. Roller Derby isn’t easy on your body, and you need to exercise and strengthen all the different muscles involved (especially the core!) or eventually the poor guys might just give out (sorry Mr. Spine…my bad).
Hopefully I’m back on skates soon, but in the meantime, I am approaching this injury as another friendly reminder that cross training is crucial, as is listening to your body (especially when it yells at you in the forms of cracks/snaps/groans and twangs).