Overcoming An Athletic Injury

Overcoming An Athletic Injury

This injury will not define you. You will overcome.

If you've been an athlete for any period of time, you've most likely experienced some sort of injury during an event, practice, etc. You love the sport you play, but it's always a downer when you experience an injury doing what you love. Sometimes we get lucky and only get a few bruises or scratches. Sometimes it may be temporary like a broken bone or concussion, even though that still sucks. However, sometimes the injury may be something that causes you pain over an extended period of time, causes surgery, or maybe even knocks you out of playing for a while, or for forever.

My sport of choice is barrel racing. For those of you that have no idea what that is, it involves riding a 1200 pound animal with a mind of its own, as fast as you will let it go, around three metal barrels. Sounds fun right? Well, to some of you, it may sound crazy, but to me, it's my favorite thing ever.

I started riding horses about a year and a half ago, and started barrel racing soon after that. In the short time after I started racing, I had some wrecks with two different horses. Three wrecks to be exact, that involved me falling off the horse at a decent speed and landing on my right hip on really hard ground. These three incidents caused me to jam my hip joint in two places, which is pretty painful and kinda puts a damper on riding. Now I know this may sound like nothing to some of you who have had surgeries and serious major injuries, but to me, it's been a pretty big obstacle.

You see, barrel racing takes quite a bit of guts. If you don't know much about horses, they can be a little intimidating. Since I've only been around horses for less than two years, experiencing what I have could have easily caused me to quit.

But that's the thing. I can't. If you love a sport like I love barrel racing, you know that you can't just quit. It doesn't matter how scared you are, or in my case, how long it takes you to get your speed back up, or your confidence back up, you've gotta "get back on the horse."

You can't let your setbacks define you. You can't let your injuries define you. You have got to get back in the game and use that experience as an advantage. You've gotta say, "Hey, you know what? If I can go through what all I've been through and still get back out here, I'm tougher than you think. I've got this." It's so easy to quit. You could just blame your injury and everyone would understand, right? But why take the easy way out? Why not make everyone think, "Dang, she's/he's still playing? After that injury? They must really love it. They must really be tough." What better way to make your opponent nervous? What better way to be an example for others? What better way to help you get through everything else in life? Because this doesn't just apply to sports. If you can do this on the field, in the arena, etc., you can do this when you have setbacks in life.

So, whatever injury you're going through, don't let it get you down. OVERCOME. It will not win. You've got this.

Cover Image Credit: RSK Allen Photography

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20 Signs You Were A High School Cheerleader

You got really tired of hearing, "Point your toes."

Cheerleading is something you'll never forget. It takes hard work, dedication, and comes with its ups and downs. Here are some statements that every cheerleader, past and present, know to be true.

1. You always had bobby pins with you.

2. Fear shot through you if you couldn't find your spankees right away and thought you left them at home.

3. You accumulated about 90 new pairs of tennis shoes...

4. ...and about 90 new bows, bags, socks, and warm ups.

5. When you hear certain songs from old cheer dance mixes it either ruins your day or brings back happy memories.

6. And chances are, you still remember every move to those dances.

7. Sometimes you catch yourself standing with your hands on your hips.

8. You know the phrase, "One more time, ladies" all too well.

9. The hospitality rooms were always one of the biggest perks of going to tournaments (at least for me).

10. You got really tired of hearing, "Point your toes."

SEE ALSO: How The Term 'Cheerlebrity' Destroyed Our Sport

11. If you left the gym at half-time to go get something, you better be back by the time the boys run back out.

12. You knew how awkward it could be on the bus rides home after the boys lost.

13. But you also knew how fun it could be if they won.

14. Figuring out line-up was extremely important – especially if one of your members was gone.

15. New uniforms were so exciting; minus the fact that they cost a fortune.

16. You know there was nothing worse than when you called out an offense cheer but halfway through, you had to switch to the defense version because someone turned over the ball.

17. You still know the school fight song by heart and every move that goes with it.

SEE ALSO: Signs You Suffer From Post-Cheerleading Depression

18. UCA Cheer Camp cheers and chants still haunt you to this day.

19. You know the difference between a clasp and a clap. Yes, they're different.

20. There's always a part of you that will miss cheering and it will always have a place in your heart.

Cover Image Credit: Doug Pool / Facebook

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Serena Williams Fights Sexism at US Open

The way we treat male and female professional tennis players has to be the same.


For 14 years I lived in Southern California, a hub for sports like tennis and water polo; many players that eventually sign to play division 1 sports or eventually enter the professional tennis world get their start in the sunny climate of California. Growing up near the greater Los Angeles area meant that I lived near where the greatest female tennis player of all time got her start. It's common knowledge that both Serena Williams and her sister Venus Williams have roots in Compton, a blue-collar city in Los Angeles known for its high crime rates.

I had the amazing opportunity of seeing Serena play in 2016 at the BNP Paribas played in Indian Wells, CA. Watching her sure power and her commandment of the court left me in awe. Growing up as a young girl playing tennis practically ensures having Serena as an idol, and I was no different. Naturally, seeing her slammed by critics for her outburst during the US Open earlier this September left me appalled. Set to win her 24th Grand Slam title, Williams lost to Naomi Osaka, the first Japanese man or woman to win a Grand Slam.

The problem that many see as controversial is the treatment of Williams by umpire Carlos Ramos, citing Williams's "verbal abuse" that cost her a game penalty and the point penalty because of a smashed racquet. This especially infuriated me because the male tennis players are frequently celebrated for their emotional outbursts; they are praised for their passion. This incident goes back to the traditional gender roles that we as a society celebrate. When a woman asserts, her dominance, she's bossy. When a man does, he's the man. We as a society accept anger more when it comes from a man than from a woman, and it needs to stop. The first step is recognizing sexism where it happens, which is what Serena did. I am now even more proud to call her my idol.

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