It is only February and I have had 2 injuries from snowboarding so far. Both of them were dislocated shoulders. I dislocated my left shoulder in December and my right shoulder in January. The first one was pure bad luck, but the second time was because I was trying a new trick. I think getting hurt is part of snowboarding. A person can do as much as they can to avoid it, but in the end, it is a high risk sport. There’s got to be a first time for every trick.
Some might call trying a backflip on a snowboard pure stupidity or recklessness. I believe I made the right decision. I had literally done hundreds into a foam pit or trampoline. With some fresh snow to soften my landing, I got out there with my coach and set out on a mission to land that backflip. We found a good jump and hit it a few times. Finally it was time to go for it. Four times, I went up to the jump and changed my mind at the last millisecond. it was extremely frustrating. I imagined going home without trying the backflip, and knew in my heart that that day would not end that way. Finally, I went for it, and committed fully. That is the thing with backflips. If you do not commit fully, you land on your head. You could literally die. I figured as long as I got more than halfway around I would be fine. I made it about three quarters of the way around and crashed hard. I was so happy I had tried. Even when I knew I was hurt, at that moment I had no regrets.
Both injuries were extremely painful and frustrating. The fact that I had to take time off my beloved sport was much worse than the initial pain of injury. I remember when I hurt my right shoulder, my left shoulder was not entirely healed. I was so helpless I could not even open doors for myself or carry anything.
Before this season I had never had any serious injuries from snowboarding. It was easy for me to say that my passion for snowboarding would make me push through any obstacle, including injury, but putting that to the test was another issue. I used to wonder how I would deal with it. Would I really love snowboarding as much if it wrecked me?
It turned out that my two injuries had made me love snowboarding even more. Every time I felt pain from either shoulder, it was a reminder of how I had overcome my fears and rebelled against my cautious nature. I used to be one of the most careful people you would ever meet. As a kid, I didn’t do diving boards, roller coasters, or heights. When I started snowboarding, I didn’t turn into an adrenaline junkie overnight, but I had found a passion that would pull me out of my comfort zone. I think the danger and having a tangible way to overcome fears is what drew me to snowboarding. I may still not be fearless now, but I like to pretend I am.