Disc Golf Injury Woes
Like most human beings, I too have had moments in life that scream "invincibility complex". When I was 5 years old, I tried to jump and grab the top of the monkey bars but missed and fell on my arm, breaking it. Did I think about that consequence before I jumped? No, probably not. I was 5 and ready to conquer the amateur gymnastics world of playground monkey bars. As I've grown older, I still have had instances where I push myself beyond my physical limits and it has cost me. Here's where I circle back to disc golf and what has been happening mid-way through my season. In my naivety, I never thought disc golf would be that strenuous on my body. That being said, when you are playing multiple times per week and trying to push yourself to be better sometimes you end up pushing yourself too hard.
At the beginning of my 2021 season, I began to notice after playing 1-2 rounds each weekend I would have consistent pain in my right knee. I just attributed this new pain to my body working out some kinks and getting back into the swing of things. I hadn't been playing throughout the winter and it would go away after a day so I wasn't very concerned. As I continued with this pattern of playing weekly, the pain in my knee was progressively getting a worse. Sometimes it would take 2 days for my knee to stop hurting but again, it would eventually subside. Finally, when I started to play on a league night on top of my weekly weekend rounds, the knee pain was just something I was used to dealing with. I would take an ibuprofen before my round and use some of numbing gel afterwards, and I was good to go (Not really, but that's where the invincibility complex fools you)! That being said, eventually after a particularly bad day and a DNF from league play, I realized I needed to actually go get it looked at.
Being an ultimate frisbee player, I'm not a newbie to sports injuries. I have had sprained ankles, shin splints and have even had my front teeth broken in my ultimate games. So, when I was able to see my physiotherapist, I had some ideas of what may have been happening. Thankfully, I had not torn any ACL, MCL etc. as I had feared. I know an injury of that severity would probably cost me my season. It turns out my glutes and hips were weak and extremely tight. This was causing a painful chain reaction that was manifesting in my excruciating knee pain.
So my physiotherapist set out a plan for me to follow which included rolling my glutes every night and my legs as well for good measure. Additionally, it consisted of a variety of glute-focused exercises. To begin, I had 4 exercises to repeat 4 sets of 12 reps. These exercises were:
Single Leg Alternating Glute Bridge
These exercises and their progressions have been essential in my recovery. Although at times I lack motivation to do them, I know they work and that really pushes me to continue to do them. After about 6 sessions and two months, I finally heard those lovely words: "You don't need to see me again". Hurrah! I am now able to play a round of disc golf without pain afterwards which at the beginning of the year was not possible.
So armed with my new, lengthier disc golf warm-up I am ready to conquer my final 2 tournaments of the season which are the Pembina Valley Open and the Manitoba Fall Classic. I can't wait!
Thanks for reading!