Kids, sport, and injuries go hand in hand.
Recently I got certified as a Sports Medicine Trainer, which is hard for me to believe considering how I barely made it through science class. They never tell you how your brain changes in menopause. For the first time, I am looking at skeletons without making a joke about anatomy. Now, I am insatiable.
This all began when I became a Certified Yoga Instructor, which coincidentally ran the same track as my aging cycle did. In true vein, I was fascinated to learn that by aligning my body, building muscle and increasing length, I could stay physically fit well past retirement.
The thought of not using a walker was appealing. Then I realized I could help people, people who were old and needed balance and stability, people who were stressed and needed relief and more important, people who were athletes. By knowing how their bodies should be trained, I could help athletes to stay in the game. Why is this important?
As a mom, I realized the hours that went into nurturing our kids through their sports passions, how much of our lives we gave up for them. When my own children were little, we must have sat through years at a pool to see seconds of a swim meet. I understood how athletes worked to get to a professional level and the sacrifices they made to get there.
Unfortunately, it doesn’t matter how good they are or how much training they have had. If they are injured, they don’t play. There is only so much the body can take. Our bodies are the bow and the arrow. Our bow only goes back so far before it snaps. Often it breaks when an athlete is on the brink of a scholarship or on the verge of being recruited.
Last week I had the privilege of interviewing with the Oakland Raiders as their yoga instructor. So many profession NFL, NBA, and major league baseball teams have turned to yoga to help keep the athletes off the bench. They have plenty of weight trainers. It is the lengthening and breathing techniques they need. For many of these players, their sport is the only bridge to a better life. If just one thing I taught them worked, just one thing, then all the time and money I had put into my training was worth it.
Sometimes I think ignorance is bliss. Now that I am armed and ready, I can’t help but share my knowledge with everyone, much to my husband’s dismay who reminds me that we don’t have the malpractice insurance to back up my trap.
So here it goes. My mom/personal trainer advice is this:
Before you let your kids get heavily involved in sports, invest in yoga classes. Once they are past puberty, get them into weight training. Talk with someone who is knowledgeable and knows both ends of the spectrum and will do a length/tension assessment on your child so you realize what areas are strong and what areas are weak.
We are pendulums and when kept on a level swing, we can keep engaging forward without injury well past the time that we decide not to play.
For more stories and life tips please visit Wendy at www.lifewithwendy.com.