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Injured pt 1 - What to do
It’s summer, and we don't want it to end. Riding for breakfast, followed by an ice cold lake dip for lunch. Maybe an evening hike or a fast downhill lap on the resort for dinner. Regardless, we’re a busy bunch of people here in Revelstoke. Also very noticeable in Revelstoke: the amount of slings, braces and crutches.
Injuries Going for a quick stroll through town, and you’ll see injuries everywhere. Broken fingers, collarbones, legs, backs, and necks. It seems like we’re almost immune to the sight of hurt people, but as soon as there are more tourists in town, you can feel the stares. Their astonished looks, you can hear them think: “what the hell is going on here?”. Well, dear tourist, dear city human: We like bikes. And we’re happy to take on the risks of getting injured, year after year. But what if it’s you that’s injured? How do you cope with those feelings of missing out, those feelings of frustration of not getting that daily rush of adrenaline, daily exercise and hangs with friends? Are you going to dwell in the feeling of incompetence and fall into the mists of sadness? And how about after your injury? It's scary to get back on the horse. Fear of crashing again, getting hurt again. How to handle the mental aspects of injury. Let me talk you through it.
In the same boat First of all, know that you’re not alone. Chances are, one of your friends have been injured before or are injured at the same time. They know what you’re going through and, if they’re nice people, will most likely support you. Ask them to come hang out with you after their ride, surely they can’t resist a fresh homemade cocktail in your backyard. Or, if you can’t resist the feeling of being close to bikes, offer to shuttle your friends. You’ll be their hero! Another benefit: They’ll owe you. So next year, you won’t have to shuttle at all, claim all those downhills!
Distraction It’s easy to get in our heads. Us mountain people are go getters. We want to make the most of those long summer days. We can’t sit still. Shit, injuries are frustrating. But also.. Summer in Revelstoke is amazing regardless whether you can bike or not. Maybe you’ve always wanted to work on your patience, or your skill to chill out a bit more. Maybe this is the moment for you to take up other hobbies, finish projects that have been waiting for your attention. Surely there are things you’ve always wanted to try. Challenge yourself in different aspects of your life. From my own experience: start a cripple club with other injured people. Art nights, walks in the alpine, potlucks. Time flies when you’re having fun! You’ll be all healed up before you know it. Next step: getting back on that horse. Fear and mental challenges
Some photos of me returning to the jump for the first time where I broke my neck (C2 busted through C1 and then a second break in C1 to be specific) earlier this summer.
Photos by: Olly Hogan