By Charlie Roebuck
As any sportsman or women knows, injury is part and parcel of the games we play. It can occur at any time through any movement, tackle or collision.
It’s something we train our bodies to hopefully cope with so we can play as injury-free as possible. This is right up from junior cricket all the way through to senior and professional. We all want as much time on the field as possible.
Everyone knows I’ve been unlucky with injuries, hence the nicknames I’ve been given over the years including ‘sick note’, ‘paper’, the list goes on.
The harder thing I have to deal with is the mental battles which take place in times of hurt, recovery and rehab.
Living with depression and anxiety is tough at the best of times. It’s something you learn to deal with and you create ways in which to help yourself avoid the bad times or through them. Coping mechanisms come into play and you start spotting signs and symptoms to stop the progression of the downward spiral.
Some of my methods and tools include: a lot of physical activity, the camaraderie of the sporting environment, family time and the use of therapeutic writing like this article! These work for me but won’t work for everyone or everything that injury throws at me. It’s very much a personal focus.
So, when I’m told I can’t play the obvious mindset is to fall into a hole. Knowing my body isn’t in the right place to perform, or do activity is hard.
Yes, I’ve been in these places before and having an understanding of the process I need to do to help myself is a good thing. For example, this time round I’m enrolling myself onto psychology courses to self-develop and open my mind to that side of the injury process, as well as use my experiences to help people.
The one thing we lose, as sportsman, is the sense of competition. Playing sport, we all know that feeling of wanting to win, wanting to perform and the adrenaline rush you get in that moment. We live for that no matter what level we play at! So, how do we find that when physical activity is gone?
Setting goals is one way of filling that void; whether in life, work or sport it creates a challenge to achieve too! To be the best you can be, winning doesn’t just have to come on the playing surface, it can be off it too!
I’ve used these courses to challenge me as a person. I want to develop and I want to win! It creates that buzz in a new exciting way and gives me something I can achieve!
I know I’ve got up to a year, maybe 18 months of not playing games but you know what, I reckon I can do more in these 18 months in a new way than I could with sport.
I’m changing myself! I’ve got a young family so now I can spend more time with them, the courses I’ve enrolled on can enhance myself personally and I can spend time with friends at sociable hours. The worlds my oyster!
People who know me may associate me with sport, I could change that to something else!
For those suffering from injury or mental health conditions like depression, use stuff like this to change yourself. Turn that negative into a positive like I have done.
You control what you can do! Make a difference! It’s a time when you can do what you want! Open your mind and become what you want!
I’m trying. I know it’s going to be tough and there’ll be bumps and bruises along the way but I’m going to try!
Read more articles like this in our Experiences section.