When One Door Closes, Another Opens…

Often when clients consult me for advice or physiotherapy treatment, they are frustrated that they have had to stop their usual sport or exercise. They will usually add that they have put on weight and need to get back to it! At this point I routinely ask them if they have tried another form of exercise that doesn’t involve the injured body part? Frequently, a look of surprise ensues “I didn’t think of that!” Sometimes it’s a guilty look “I’ve been lazy…I’ve used it (my injury) as an excuse.” On other occasions it’s just a blank expression “I didn’t know what I could do?” When I tell them that in fact, there are quite a few things they can still do, their eyes light up with excitement at the prospect of resuming some form of physical activity.

I remember treating a triathlete several years ago. He came to see me because of a calf problem that was preventing him from running. Running was his favorite part of the triathlon and so predictably, it had a prominent place in his training regime. Initially I asked him to stop running and focus instead on swimming and upper body strengthening…he actually started enjoying swimming which in the past had been a chore. He would come in excitedly and tell me how his technique was improving. When he returned to competition he was surprised to see that his times had improved dramatically! By allowing him to focus on his weaknesses, his injury turned out to be a blessing in disguise.

Alexander Graham Bell said “When one door closes, another opens; but we often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door that we do not see the one which has opened for us.” So true, we are constantly surrounded by opportunity but it takes a positive outlook and a flexible attitude to seize it!

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