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It's not just a physical thing

Injuries are unavoidable hurdles in an athlete’s life. Whether you jump over it {only to face another hurdle} or give up {leaving behind your passion just because you’re scared of falling again} is up to you.

While most injuries heal on their own with little or no disruption in sports participation, some injuries can be severe and they can take a toll on you, both physically and mentally.

But being injured doesn’t just mean lying in your bed and resting throughout the day- it also means not being able to do what you love the most. Whether temporarily or permanently is up to you - whether you get scared and give up or tell yourself that you can still bounce back up harder and higher is your decision.

Being injured also means having unwanted thoughts and unwelcome fears enter your mind.

The mental health of an athlete is severely impacted after an injury. Sadness, isolation, irritation, anger, disengagement, depression, and lack of motivation may follow and that’s completely normal. Not being able to do what you love the most will trigger certain emotional disturbances and that’s okay.

When Olympic skier Picabo Street suffered significant leg and knee injuries in March 1998, she battled depression all through her recovery. She said, “I went all the way to rock bottom. I never thought I would ever experience anything like that in my life. It was a combination of the atrophying of my legs, the new scars, and feeling like a caged animal.” And yet, she fought back and returned to skiing once more.

Ariana Berlin, an American gymnast vaulted through numerous serious injuries that she suffered in a car crash but went on to become a college gymnastics star even after doctors told her to dismount and give up on her dreams.

In 2012, Joshna Chinappa, an Indian squash player suffered an anterior cruciate ligament that threatened to end her career. The doctors told her that she might not be able to return to sports again. 2 short years later, she scripted history by bagging the gold medal at the 2014 Commonwealth Games partnering with Dipika Pallikal in Glasgow.

Alex Morgan, a famous American soccer star, tore her ACL in high school. She went on to become a FIFA champion and earned a gold medal in the Olympics.

All these athletes went through terrible times and their minds, too, played games with them. But with proper treatment and irrepressible spirits, nothing could stop them from achieving what they wanted to achieve.

If you’re an athlete and you’re reading this, you should know that the world is waiting to get to know you. Waiting to know your story. The world is waiting for you to cross that hurdle and fly through the red ribbon at the end of your race. {So don’t you think you should start running again, too?}

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