After suffering a season-ending knee injury in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany, last January, American Downhiller Steven Nyman has been on the mend back in Park City, Utah. He’s been spending his days filled with rehab and his duties as a father to a newborn daughter. It is far too easy for an athlete to feel discouraged after suffering a serious injury like Nyman’s, but the wily veteran of the U.S. squad has a few tricks up his sleeve when it comes to recovering from injury and coming back strong.
With the 2018 Olympic Winter Games in PyeongChang, South Korea, on the horizon, Nyman and PSIA’s Michael Rogan recently appeared on the PSIA-AASI First Chair podcast to discuss how athletes can stay motivated and healthy when faced with a long, arduous road ahead of them after injury.
“The way I look at it is establishing a solid foundation and establishing a good base to where things are the least likely to go wrong,” Nyman says. “Now, I have that solid foundation where everything’s habitual, everything’s easy, everything came to work to where I can trust it and don’t have those questions in my head.”
Nyman even shares his trick for coming into the rehab process with a fresh mind and not allowing any lofty expectations influence his decision making.
“Over the years, you gain so much knowledge, and you think you know all this stuff, but what’s really important is when something like (an injury) happens, is to enter with a beginner’s mind,” he explains. “Enter knowing you’re starting from a clean slate. Yes, I’ve learned all of these lessons in the past and I can integrate those into this rehab process, but I need to really stay humble and have a beginner’s mind and listen to the doctors.”
“I’m fortunate enough to be around a bunch of different athletes that have been through a lot of similar things to where I can pick their brains,” he adds. “It’s all a big puzzle, and I love solving the puzzle.”
Want to hear more? Have a listen to the full podcast below.