One Athlete's Mind
The weekend before I headed to Lutsen I did some running and rollerski training races. About 200m into the running race I had a very familiar sudden pain in my mid back. It almost felt like I just really needed to crack it, but it stayed with me for the whole race. When I finished I told my coach about it and he asked if it had happened before, and I was reminded of two summers previously when I had the same pain occur. That time it had turned out that one of my ribs had popped out of place, and was making it feel like I was being stabbed every time I took a breath in.
Luckily it wasn’t quite as bad this time, though it was still quite painful for the first few days and kept me up for an entire night when it first happened. I almost didn't start the rollerski time trial because of it. When it happened two years ago the massage therapist who fixed it said that he guessed that it had been caused by my sudden change in elevation, as I had just moved from Penetang ON to Canmore AB, and hadn’t adjusted my training plan to accommodate such a move. So the thinking was that I had to breath harder than I was used to in order to get the same amount of oxygen to my muscles, which caused my lungs to inflate to the point of shifting one of my ribs from it’s usual position.
This time however, the chiropractor I saw said that it had been caused by the fascia in my back being too tight, which had caused it to pull that rib away from it’s normal position. After a few chiropractic moves on my back, he put two 12” pieces of physio tape on my back, one on each side of my spine. Over the next four days the tape worked to relax my fascia and pull it back to it’s normal place. This was definitely a different approach to fixing it than two years ago, that time they just massaged my back until it popped back into place (it felt glorious). This was a much more interesting way of doing it though, and productive too, as we fixed the root of the problem, hopefully making it so that it doesn’t happen again anytime soon. I also learned a fair bit about the muscles and fascia in my back, and how things work, so that’s always a plus.
My back has been pain free for about 5 days now, so it would seem as though all is good again, and I’m ready to race!
Jordan Cascagnette, Student-Athlete, Ski Coach