Imagine running your fastest and jumping off one foot as high as you can… Not so difficult to imagine. Maybe even fun… Now imagine running your fastest and trying to jump off one foot again, except this time when you go to jump you invert your ankle and it smacks the ground….
That is what happened to me earlier this year. It resulted in a fracture, a torn ATFL and an evulsion. But most concerning, I also ruptured my posterior tibialis tendon… that tendon that connects your inside ankle bone to the arch of your foot. The job of this tendon is to invert and flex your foot. It literally holds your foot in its nice position you are accustomed to. When the posterior tendon ruptures your arch collapses and usually requires surgery.
|Posterior tibialis tendon and
I’ve ruptured mine and by only the finger of God has my foot managed to keep its form and I am miraculously able to run, jump and everything else off of it. It’s an injury that’s gathered some amazing medical minds together. I am an anomaly, further complicated by the fact that I am an elite athlete, who happens to be a jumper training for London 2012.
In a race against the clock, I just completed a brief series of competitions in Europe to test my “new foot” sans a posterior tibialis tendon. With enough time to make any necessary changes for London 2012, the goal was to see how my “new foot” would hold up. While, I took a nice competition beating, the mission of testing my foot seems to have gone well (pending final approval of my medical team)… AND, I also faced my inversion sprain fear.
This injury had the potential to be career ending. I’ve had 3 other near career ending injuries in my life; each one being a grinder as you work your way back to normality. I was initially angry I lost this season, but when the Olympic Games is on the chopping block, I gladly would take a missed 2011 season for a successful London 2012 season.
I’ve had a few in my career… I’m beginning to feel like a cat with 9 lives. I think I could do with a season of no injuries, great performances and smooth sailing. Say 2012?
What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger!
Strengthened by weaknesses,