“”If you see me in a fight with a bear, prey for the bear.” Ive always loved that quote. That’s ‘mamba mentality’ we don’t quit, we don’t cower, we don’t run. We endure and conquer. [Kobe Bryant Facebook post]
Kobe’s will to succeed is remarkable, if not manic. Thus, it surely wasn’t surprising when he returned to NBA action only eight months following a left Achilles tear– an injury that can take up to two years to recover from. Nor was it surprising that he lasted only six games before injuring the knee in that very same left leg.”
Exceptional as he may be, superstars like Kobe Bryant are not invulnerable to human flaws. His injuries are simply proof that even the best athletes are not unstoppable and that recovery should be taken religiously to avoid dire consequences. Here’s a closer look at the injuries that the Black Mamba incurred last year:
Achilles Tendon Tear
The Achilles tendon runs at the back of the ankle (from heel to calf) and allows extension of the foot and toes. Excess or sudden-impact stress can cause inflammation and tears or ruptures on the tendon, which in turn cause pain, swelling, and tenderness on the area. While simple strains can be treated conservatively (rest, cold compress, and medicine), tears or complete ruptures are repaired surgically; complete recovery ranges from 1 to 2 years.
Unless genetics or bone nutrition play into the picture, a typical knee fracture arises from sudden blows or trauma to the knee. The extent of fracture will determine the treatment of choice, but usually pain and swelling are the common symptoms. As in Kobe’s case, 4 to 6 weeks are enough to completely heal simple fractures by using casts or orthopedic boots and physical therapy, while surgery for serious cases warrant up to 1 year in rehabilitation.
In the event of bone injury, a visit to your trusted Chattanooga orthopedic surgeons is needed for a complete workup and prescription of treatment. The dangers of forgoing treatment and skipping rehab are consequential. An injured person can end up with further injuries like Kobe or, in the worst possible scenarios, loss of optimal leg function.
Specialists in orthopedic surgery and sports medicine would be the best resources for more information on this subject. Medical practices like Center for Sports Medicine and Orthopaedics have a team of expert orthopedic surgeons in Chattanooga, TN available for consultation, diagnostic workups, treatment options, pain management and rehabilitation. Sure, it is a noble idea to keep fighting with a Mamba Mentality, but health and welfare should not be neglected.
(Article Information and Image from Kobe Bryant: Delusional or a Symbol for Change?, The Huffington Post, January 14, 2014)