The hardest part about coming back from an injury or constant pain is all mental. The fear of possibly injuring yourself again is the only thing you can think about when you are basketball training, lifting in the weight room, practicing with the team, during conference games, etc. Any type of movement that you might feel pain, hear a crack, notice stiffness, etc. can be scary. The last thing you want to do is sit your butt back down on the sidelines and watch your team play without you. ESPECIALLY if you encounter the same situation that injured yourself in the first place.
When you return to play, return with confidence, no hesitation, “let’s do this” attitude, and most importantly, fearlessly. If you do the opposite, performance is not going to be at your full potential and becoming hesitant actually will increase reinjury and/or encountering another injury from overcompensation.
Before returning to play, you must:
- Avoid live contact play for the proper days, weeks, or months the doctor said.
- Complete all rehabilitation steps, exercises, and recovery.
- Go through a checklist of approval from doctor, coach, athletic trainer, and yourself.
- Know you have successfully did ALL of your recovery process.
- Have the WILL and WANT to come back stronger than before.
- Fully believe yourself that you are ready to GO ALL OUT!
- Promise to yourself that you are willing to put it all on the line when you come back.
- Write down this promise to yourself so you can revisit this statement when you need it the most.