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Coming back from injury

gymnasticsgirly22

Coach
Coach
Gymnast
May 29, 2019
8
Country
USA
Does anyone have any tips for coming back from an injury?

More specifically an ACL tear (reconstructed with surgery) and a grade II sprain of the MCL in the knee?

I just got back after about 9 months off and have been back for about a month. I have really been struggling with confidence because some of the girls on my team think that I “complain too much” about my knee hurting when I do a lot of tumbling/jumps/dismounting. They also laugh at my skills because they are all working a level above me and the laugh at my form because my knee doesn’t go as straight as it ised to.

This is all really discouraging me and I feel like the drop in my confidence is contributing to the lack of getting my skills back, because they make me think I’m terrible and then I think I can’t do the skill even though I have done it many times before.

My coaches have been really supportive and keep encouraging me and I honestly love being back. Bout my teammates are making it hard.

Any tips/ideas?
 

Jard.the.gymnast

Verified Coach
Verified Coach
Coach
Gymnast
Former Gymnast
Apr 12, 2017
1,313
17
Heerenveen
Country
Netherlands
That sounds like a toxic envoirement to me to be honest. Can you move down a group maybe (one level lower), since your skill level is one level below your teammates.

Otherwise you can ask your coaches to explain the situation to your teammates alomg with you, maybe it is just a misunderstanding.

If nothing helps, maybe even consider a gym switch. Nothing is worth having your confidence beaten down by anyone
 

gamerchris360

Coach
Coach
Proud Relative
Gymnast
Fan
Jun 22, 2019
1
42
Country
USA
Remember many of your team mates haven't been through something this traumatic on their bodies.

Let me give you an example: I had a cancerous tumor near my liver. To get it they had to cut an upside down y into my tummy and go in to get the tumor. (They got it, I'm cancer free and not dying for another 60 years or so.) Now if I do any ab work it still hurts, 6 years later. I can't do more than 3 v-ups. I can't get a leg lift to look good at all. Does it limit me? Yes. But after the surgery do you know how many v-ups I could do? 0.

Keep working on your skills. Progress might be frustratingly, agonizingly slow and you might not get to compete with the same team, as you might age out before you hit the strength and ability goals you have for yourself. My goal is not be be the best gymnast ever. My goal is to be one of those "crazy old people" who can still do this stuff at 80.

While all those people might tease because you can't keep up now, just set realistic goals and be proud of your progress. It's super hard not to judge yourself by comparing to others. There are many people at my gym I look at with awe and wonder and I want their skills, and they are 1/4 my age. Thing is, long after they move on in life to other pursuits I'll finally nail that front handspring vault with a twist and be happy.

Gymnastics is not a completely physical sport. It's super hard mentally to talk yourself into throwing your body around. It is super scary stuff and to do it after injury takes an odd kind of strength few have.

Good luck to you, I hope you find a way through it!
 

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