California Lutheran University's Student Newspaper Since 1961

The Echo

California Lutheran University's Student Newspaper Since 1961

The Echo

California Lutheran University's Student Newspaper Since 1961

The Echo

    The Athlete’s Road to Recovery

    On Feb. 24, Chicago Bulls point guard Derrick Rose injured his meniscus for the second time since last November in the Bulls’ game against the Portland Trail Blazers, according to

    Injuries can spell the end for an athlete’s career, especially one that has included many injuries to the knee. Rose has suffered several injuries to his knee including a torn ACL in 2012, his right medial meniscus in 2013 and most recently reinjuring his right medial meniscus, according to

    Sustaining this many injuries to his knees in such a short period of time begs the question of how many more injuries he can takebefore it begins affecting his entire life beyond his basketball career.

    When athletes’ idols endure injuries like this, it makes student athletes like our Kingmen and Regals significantly more aware of their own bodies and the limits they can push them to.

    Athletes that have passion for the sports they play have been playing long enough to know what they can and cannot do; however these limits can take their toll.

    Junior pitcher on the Kingsmen baseball team Landry Kiyabu sustained a common elbow injury among baseball pitchers his sophomore year and has since started on the recovery process.

    The “Tommy John” injury affects the ulnar collateral ligament, a ligament used in the intense degrees of motion involved in pitching, according to Kiyabu.

    Kiyabu’s situation was not as severe as it could have been, because he caught it in the beginning stages. A slight tear can easily turn into a full tear, given the right circumstances, and lead into a much more serious realm involving surgery.

    Kiyabu said the mental aspect was not so much before the injury, but rather coming back into play after the injury had been healed.

    “There’s that mental block that chances are, it happens again, will I know when it happens, how will it feel when it happens,” Kiyabu said.

    It seems our bodies have a tipping point on the side of harm, and as a result, the margin for error becomes significantly smaller once that point is reached.

    The same happened to sophomore wide receiver Ryan Tolliver, when he tore his ACL his freshman year.

    “One of my cleats fell out and got stuck in the turf and my knee just twisted the wrong way,” Tolliver said.

    Similar to Rose’s injury, this tear in one of the crucial ligaments in your knee can spell disaster for an athlete’s career.

    Luckily, Tolliver caught his injury in time to start the recovery process. He said he wanted to remedy this injury as soon as possible so he scheduled a surgery as quickly as he could.

    Tolliver said he was doing physical therapy for seven months after the surgery.

    He is fully recovered now and looks forward to his return back on the field as a Kingsman.

    However, as an athlete the emotional aspect plays a very important role in the mind of the injured.  Tolliver said it is mentally exhausting running through your mind while your are still in a vulnerable state and preoccupied on the matter of getting back on the field.

    Being some of the first serious injuries these athletes have sustained, it is an incredibly arduous journey from injured to healed. It is athletes who recover and are back on a healthy track after an ACL or elbow tear, like Kiyabu or Tolliver, that have an intense and real passion for the sport they play.

    Connor McKinney
    Staff Writer
    Published March 11, 2015