Student athletes learn to deal with pain of injuries
by Maria Moncada
Nov 03, 2011 | 409 views | 0 0 comments | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Contusions, sprains, torn ligaments and tendons, fractures, broken bones, concussions, pulled muscles, swellings and other injuries can play a major role in an athlete’s life – it can be devastating news.

A major injury can cause an athlete to be out roughly anywhere between six months to the rest of their high school career. A minor injury can cause an athlete to be out anywhere from a few days to six months, according to

Physically, it’s painful, but what happens to that fire inside, or that spirit, when an athlete suffers an injury?

Junior Running back Allen Cordaway suffered a severe broken ankle and broken femur during a football game on Sept. 16 in front of a homecoming crowd. The damage of the injury was shown when Cordaway was lying on the football field, his coaches and parents rushed to his side and the ambulance was signaled to come on the field.

Everyone in the stands sat hushed and saddened for the young athlete.

Cordaway will be out a year-and-six-months, which puts an end to his football career – a sport he loves. Being able to cope with his injury is all he can do.

“I just follow what the doctor says,” Cordaway said. “I do what I can and I position myself to where it doesn’t hurt.”

Being sidelined and benched is a tough experience to face for an athlete. Self-motivation and confidence play major roles in a recovery. Friends and family are another factor of motivation to help in an injured athletes recovery.

“I cried when I found out I was out and was going to need surgery,” Junior Khadeshia Hopkins said. “But things happen for a reason.”

Two years ago, Hopkins suffered from a torn ACL (anterior cruciate ligament), PCL(posterior cruciate ligament), MCL(medial collateral ligament), and meniscus. She soon underwent surgery, and within a year of rehab and recovery she was back. The injury made her appreciate things more.

“My team needed my support, and I had to wait until next year,” Hopkins said. “It was hard but I had to stay strong and positive and just work hard to get back.”

Lady Badger athlete Kalli Ferguson experienced and has recovered from a pulled quad, which led to a bucket handle tear which consists of a fracture, dislocation, and missing cartilage in the hip.

“My mom encouraged me to keep my head up,” Ferguson said. “She would never let me give up.”

Many athletes continue on throughout careers and become coaches. Coaching possibilities are usually a first option to athletes. Coach Cody Fields, who suffered a labral tear during college baseball, said he did the next best thing for him: He became a coach.

But it’s not for everyone.

“I would probably not be a coach,” Cordaway said. “It is not my interest, and I don’t want to witness anyone going through my pain.”

According to, there is no certain way to avoid injuries. An injury happens unwillingly, being cautious can help prevent them but it is no guarantee. Stretching, icing, heating, eating healthy, and getting the right amount of sleep are some tips to help an athlete stay safe. Also, having a good relationship with the coach will help, when an athlete is hurting don’t be afraid to talk to the coach about it. Safety of an athlete is more important than the sport in which they are participating in.
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