How To Comeback After a Foot Injury (And claim it a comeback for years)

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Needing heel pain treatment or a bunion removal can be a routine, relatively simple process – though you still want one of Colorado’s best in podiatry. Contact Podiatry Associates, P.C. to set an appointment or for more information on diagnosis and treatment.

 

 

When you have a serious injury, coming back is also going to have a lot to do with how you respond to it.

 

Mike Schultz, US Paralympian in Snowboard-cross and Banked Slalom, knew how to respond when he first lost his leg then shattered his heel on his remaining foot.

 

Schultz was a Snocross (snowmobile) racer with metal fabrication experience. After his losing his leg in an accident, he had thought about never snowmobiling again. Then he got on a snowmobile, felt the rush of the speed in the cold air, and told himself “I love this, I can’t give [sports] up.” He then got to task fabricating a new leg for himself.

 

He got into snowboarding, initially to ensure the leg he was designing was adaptive enough. Now he’s on the US Paralympic team.

 

Along the way, he “crushed” his heel.  First he came back from the amputation of his leg. Now he needed major podiatric work on his heel. “That heel fracture was the toughest injury I’ve had to [come back] from mentally and physically,” Schultz claimed. “There was so much pain [from the fracture].”

 

He shares what worked for him and a lesson for anyone trying to make a comeback, “I focused on what I could do with what I have to work with.”

 

OTHER GREAT TIPS FOR COMING BACK AFTER A FOOT INJURY

 

(1)   Try to remember that you are not your foot injury or circumstance; you’re more, much more.

 

It’s common for some level and period of depression to set in after a serious injury, particularly in cases of long-term injuries or injuries that require a long healing period or surgery. Coming back from an injury is partially a mind game.

 

Remember that you’re bigger than the foot injury. The sooner we accept that the human will has an awe-inspiring capacity to adapt to almost any situation, the faster our own determination can align us on that path of healing and overcoming for ourselves.

 

Sometimes, like for Mike Schultz, we can come back to even greater levels of achievement after injuries – whether a heel injury requiring experts in podiatry – or other foot injuries. Maintaining perspective and optimism is everything. Humor helps.

 

(2)   CONSULT YOUR SPECIALIST before returning to your sport. If it’s a heel, foot, ankle, or other related injury or pain, consult a podiatrist at Podiatry Associates before re-training.

 

Why re-injure it when so close to fully healing? A simple re-examination by a podiatrist at Podiatry Associates can save you a lot of time, money and pain in the long run, and ensure that you get back out there as soon as possible.

 

(3)   Once you have the green light, walk before you run. The fastest path to full potential is the patience to go through each step one at a time.  “Doctor’s orders” exist to help you recover as fast as possible, so pace yourself according to what your podiatry expert or other specialist instructs. Progression takes gradual steps.

 

(4)   Consider causes of your injury and possible solutions. Perhaps better balance of orthotics might help prevent it in the future.

 

(5)   Mind and mitigate your stress levels. Stress is toxic to healing. Whether it’s sitting in a quiet spot in a park, watching comedy marathons on Netflix or spending time with your favorite pet, have a plan to relax and de-stress regularly.

 

(6)   It’s the little things that count, so celebrate the small victories! Unless you’re moonwalking or something, each step of rebuilding your activity level that you accept and find the patience to work though is a step forward.

 

If you’re experiencing foot or heel pain, or need guidance coming back from an injury, please contact us.

 
Dr. Cynthia Oberholtzer-Classen, DPM
Founder and Owner of Podiatry Associates, PC
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