“Who says you can’t go home?”
There’s a song with that line in it, so well sung by Jon Bon Jovi and Jennifer Nettles. Home is a source of comfort for all of us. Familiarity, routine and our own space is what home is all about.
With athletics, many of us still feel that same comfort zone swimming in a pool, taking some slapshots on the hockey rink, putting at that favorite golf course, or moving around on the tennis court. Weather permitting, perhaps it’s a familiar path or road to run or bike on, or a field where friends gather to play football over Thanksgiving, or even skating on that familiar outdoor ice rink during the Christmas season.
There are many people who, sadly, do not share that home-y feeling, likely due to burnout from the sport, an injury, or maybe just a bad experience while participating. If there was a way to let people know that going home to your sport or favorite activity past life is really OK, I would shout it from the rooftops. There are both health and mental benefits to “going back” to a world where you scored that goal and crossed over the finish line.
A high school friend asked if he could get some guidance or instruction if he returned to swimming after being out of the water for several years. The answer is a resounding yes! There are numerous adult programs that offer traditional swim lessons and even some fun water fitness classes. Can’t float in deep water? No problem! Pools are well-equipped with floatation belts and other floaty-type items (most look like oversized dumbbells). Guys are welcome too, so maybe this friend of mine can feel “at home” in the pool – one of these days.
Remember that one, important word while deciding to participate: Modify!
Don’t push it – take your time, perhaps consult with your doctor, and ease into it.
Modification fits right in as a recent back injury taught me that my days of flip turns are “over and out.” But that’s OK…I don’t see myself competing in the near future anyway, and I’m just glad to be hanging out with my friends.
Home to me…is being in the water as it’s my sanctuary, my safe space. It’s not having a care in the world for a short amount of time, not hearing the ringing in my ears from my ongoing tinnitus nor dealing with a hectic work environment.
What is “home” to you? Share your thoughts and enjoy!
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