Personal Lessons from Being Injured

Daniel Lehewych, M.A
14 min readDec 3, 2019

No matter what sport you play, injury is an inevitability. If you become an expert at any physical endeavor, your body will eventually fight back. Unfortunately, it is often assumed that this is only the case with extreme sports like mixed martial arts, weightlifting, or football. Likewise, many view golf as an incredibly boring and passive sport. Whether or not such opinions about golf are true, one needs to look no further than Tiger Woods and the myriad of back injuries he has sustained in his career to see my point.

I am a powerlifter. This means, as an athlete, my primary objective is to get as strong as possible on the barbell squat, bench, and deadlift, using proper form. I have had my share of injuries in my lifting. I have been very fortunate to say that none of them have been severe — yet. Before getting into those, I think it would be helpful to show the injury rate across different sports. It is, I feel, an informative piece of preparatory data for any person, athlete or not. This is especially apparent in corollary because it is quite plausible to state that inactivity makes people much more injury-prone than regular activity. As asserted by Dr. Eric Helms in The Muscle & Strength Pyramid, “Unfortunately, serious resistance training can result in injury. Fortunately, the risk I not that high and I would argue the health benefits of a life that includes lifting [or sports in general] far outweigh the negative effects of the injuries you might sustain along the way.” (1) This data is important because even if you do everything right in your respective sport, injury is inevitable.

The research, as reported by Keogh, Windwood, Assaet al. l, and Videbæk (2, 3, 4, 5) done on cross-sport injury rates, studied the average number of injuries sustained per 1000 hours across different athletic pursuits. As a powerlifter, I fit into the category of being prone to an occurrence of 5.8 injuries per 1000 hours of training. In contrast, a bodybuilder is prone to only 0.24 to 1 injury per 1000 hours of training. The injury rate for CrossFit was shown to be 3.1 injuries per 1000 hours of training. The most injury-prone weightlifters are Strongman competitors, who averaged 4.5…

Daniel Lehewych, M.A