Pivot assists the Joey’s to win the U16 ASEAN Football Championship22 Aug 2016, Posted by Blog Articles in
I’m back people and what a time away in Cambodia! My trip with the Joeys as their soft tissue therapist for the U16 ASEAN Football Federation (AFF) Championships was an extraordinary time, culminating in the Joeys being the overall champions!
An amazing experience – so stoked and proud to be a part of their history making win. These boys have incredible talent and witnessing their drive to come back after a somewhat challenging start (first game drew, second game lost) is inspirational to say the least. As the head coach, Tony Vidmar says, “you boys love digging yourself into a hole”; they did this several times during the tour only to become overall champions. Both the semifinal and final against Thailand and Vietnam, went to penalty shootouts. Their courage, character and tenacity is unmatched with some very promising talent shining through.
It was great to be in a completely different work environment – I honed in on my skills and learnt from others working along side the team physiotherapist and doctor aiding the team to victory. The conditions were tough for these boys with the average daily temperature being in the mid-high 30’s and humidity sitting anywhere between 80-90%. Some training sessions were brutal, as were some games. We were always thankful for an afternoon monsoon when they arrived.
So much was learnt on this trip not just from a treatment perspective – techniques, recovery including active and hydrotherapy, mobility, training, warm-ups and the importance of rest and hydration, but also the dynamics of working with a team on tour. There is a lot to be done logistically and it was great to be able to pitch in where/when needed to aid in a smooth & successful tour.
I was – and still am – blown away as to how much work the coaching staff put into analysing the game play of each game prior to pre-game meetings, where the boys would then discuss tactics, the opposition and how to execute a win. Truly amazing stuff and I learnt heaps about the game, though still a bit rusty on the rules…
These boys have a great opportunity with the AFF Centre of Excellence in Canberra with incredible resources on hand to make the most of their talent, and capitalise on this. Definitely a worthwhile month away with a great bunch people – coaches, team manger, other medical staff and being surrounded by some incredible and inspiring young talent. It was an honour, and a pleasure to say the least.
So back to business as usual with one month of what seems like the longest winter in history (even after a month away!) to go. I’m not about to start spruiking clichéd sayings about health like “spring into Spring”, but please do look after your bodies – train/exercise hard, eat well and come see me for a tune up – your body mind will thank you and you’ll be ready to tackle the warmer weather with a vengeance!