In about three weeks time the rugby season comes to an end and I'll have completed my first year as the therapist for a local lower league rugby club. We have one league match left and the possibility of three cup matches, the first this weekend.
We've had a good season. An understatement given that the team got promoted last year losing only one game and so far this season they haven't lost a league game. That's two seasons without losing a home game, quite an achievement. In fact the goal at the start of the season was simply to do enough to stay in the league.
I can't take any credit for the team's performance, although given the amount of tape I've put around ankles, thumbs, shoulders and knees, I made my own contribution!
I've really enjoyed the season. I've learnt a lot, dealt with a few situations I've not come across before. I've been able to apply my skills as a therapist and learn some new ones. I've watched nervously from the sidelines as the team has had to defend its line and shared the frustration of players and spectators alike when passes haven't gone to hand or scoring opportunities have been lost.
Not everyone would want to spend their time standing in the wind and rain of a cold and wet winter Saturday afternoon, giving their time either for free or for a fairly nominal fee. Clubs at this level rarely have the financial resources to offer a competitive rate. On the other hand, it's a great way to extend your skills. If you can afford to do it, then I'd say give it a go. I got involved by being asked by the new club coach whom I'd met previously.
After the end of the season the team has a couple of months off and then pre-season training starts in July. Hopefully, if I'm involved with the pre-season training, we will be able to do some work that might help reduce some injury risks. I might even do some fitness work or functional movement stuff with them if I get the chance.
And who knows where it might lead. Perhaps in a couple of years time I'll actually be making a reasonable living out of it all!!