Stress Fractures in Figure Skating | Page 2 | Golden Skate

Stress Fractures in Figure Skating

sisinka

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Joined
Nov 25, 2006
LADIES STRESS FRACTURES - TOP 7 AT WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS from 2004 to 2024:

Table with ladies highlighted in time when they already had history of stress fracture.
https://files.fm/u/q9uqqgqb4h (document)
https://files.fm/u/ndkzs7p4c2 (jpg)


- Shizuka Arakawa (JPN)
- Sasha Cohen (USA) - After medaling at Nats in 2000, Sasha Cohen also had to skip the 2001 Nationals due to a stress fracture in her back ... (FS Universe Forum)
- Michelle Kwan (USA) - Kwan's stress fracture is located in the second toe on her left foot. (autumn 1997) (https://www.nytimes.com/1997/11/19/...gering-foot-injury-leaves-kwan-in-a-cast.html )
- Miki Ando (JPN)
- Carolina Kostner (ITA)
- Julia Sebestyen (HUN)
- Fumie Suguri (JPN) - The stress fracture on both feet : I decided to postpone the surgery until after the Olympics. (2000-01) (https://fumiesuguri.tripod.com/quotes.htm )
- Irina Slutskaya (RUS)
- Elena Sokolova (RUS)
- Kimmie Meissner (USA)
- Yukari Nakano (JPN)
- Sarah Meier (SUI)
- Joannie Rochette (CAN) - In November 2002, Rochette withdrew from competition due to a stress fracture. (https://www.thecanadianencyclopedia.ca/en/article/joannie-rochette )
- Mao Asada (JPN)
- Yu Na Kim (KOR) - 23, will be sidelined for about 6 weeks with a metatarsal injury on her right foot, reports Eurosport. “During training Yuna felt a lot of pain in her right foot,” says an official from the Korea Skating Union. “The diagnosis she received is that she would need around six weeks to recover and will also require physio after she returns.” (autumn 2013) (https://louettafootandankle.com/edu...yuna-kim-suffers-foot-injury-during-training/ )
- Rachel Flatt (USA) - She was sent to the 2011 World Championships. A week before the event, Flatt was diagnosed with a stress fracture in her right tibia (her landing leg). (Wikipedia)
- Laura Lepisto (FIN) - She then missed much of the season due to injury, having developed a stress fracture in her right hip as a result of practicing too many triple loops. (autumn 2006) (Wikipedia)
- Alena Leonova (RUS)
- Cynthia Phaneuf (CAN) - 2005-06: Hurt right ankle in practice, led to a stress fracture that cost her the season and an Olympic berth. (https://olympic.ca/team-canada/cynthia-phaneuf/ )
- Mirai Nagasu (USA) - A stress fracture kept Nagasu out of training for a month during the summer. She returned to practice in September 2010. (Wikipedia)
- Alisa Czisny (USA)
- Ksenia Makarova (RUS)
- Akiko Suzuki (JPN)
- Ashley Wagner (USA)
- Kanako Murakami (JPN) - Murakami had many stress fractures. (https://fs-gossips.com/i-got-my-per...ted-as-bad-and-she-was-ignorant-about-health/ )
According to this article, Kanako has stress fracture on her left foot and has been getting treatment all this month. Good job for delivering a clean skate tonight. She will graduate soon from university in 2017 spring and will discuss her future with her coach.
http://www.sanspo.com/sports/news/20161225/fgr16122522370020-n1.html - this link doesn't work anymore (https://www.goldenskate.com/forum/threads/kanako-murakami.40582/page-35 )
- Kexin Zhang (CHN)
- Gracie Gold (USA) - ...U.S. figure skating champion Gracie Gold has withdrawn from the Grand Prix Final (2014) because of a stress fracture in her left foot. (https://www.espn.com/olympics/figur...978105/gracie-gold-withdraws-grand-prix-final )
- Zijun Li (CHN)
- Julia Lipnitskaya (RUS)
- Anna Pogorilaya (RUS)
- Elizaveta Tuktamysheva (RUS)
- Satoko Miyahara (JPN) - ...who turns 19 on Sunday, was diagnosed with a stress fracture in her left hip. ( https://www.japantimes.co.jp/sports...g/injury-forces-miyahara-world-championships/ )
- Elena Radionova (RUS) - It was important for me to win the second time (Junior World Championships), despite my big toe injury. A common injury for skaters: fractures appear on the finger due to lutz and flip. (https://www.fsuniverse.net/forum/threads/elena-radionova-announces-her-retirement-“i-gave-it-all”.107603/ )
- Rika Hongo (JPN)
- Evgenia Medvedeva (RUS) - Olympic figure skating favorite Yevgenia Medvedeva‘s right leg is in a cast after an MRI revealed bone cracks in her right foot, (https://www.nbcsports.com/olympics/news/yevgenia-medvedeva-foot-injury-figure-skating )
- Kaetlyn Osmond (CAN) - She suffered the stress reaction -- a precursor to a stress fracture -- in August (2013), and was off the ice for several weeks. (https://www.ctvnews.ca/sports/canad...lyn-osmond-poised-for-olympic-debut-1.1632310 )
- Gabrielle Daleman (CAN) - A stress fracture in her right foot last season hobbled her efforts at the Olympics 2014 (she placed 17th). (https://skatecanada.ca/2014/09/jump-by-jump-gabby-daleman-is-shooting-for-the-stars/ )
- Karen Chen (USA) - ...Then I had my stress fracture in my right foot (season 2018-19) (Wikipedia)
- Mai Mihara (JPN) - In the end of the summer, before the start of the season she felt a pain in her ankle. After finishing 7th at the Four Continents Championships 2024, Mihara revealed that her right ankle injury was a stress fracture. (https://fs-gossips.com/mai-mihara-i...-to-those-who-have-supported-me-so-i-thought/ )
- Wakaba Higuchi (JPN) - suffered a stress fracture in her right shin that ruled her out for 2022-23. (https://www.nbcsports.com/olympics/news/mai-mihara-figure-skating-grand-prix-final )
- Alina Zagitova (RUS)
- Bradie Tennell (USA) - After winning the 2015 U.S. junior title at age 16, two stress fractures in her back kept her off the ice for a total of six months in her first two senior seasons. (https://www.nbcsports.com/olympics/news/bradie-tennell-figure-skating-injury )
...She also worked on including a triple Axel into her routines, which was ready at the beginning of the season, but a stress fracture in her foot in July 2019 prevented her from using it. (Wikipedia)
- Elizabet Tursynbayeva (KAZ) - when the back problems started. It happened in August 2019. ...He diagnosed a stress fracture (back) and said that I needed a year off to fully recover. (https://fs-gossips.com/elizabet-tur...ri-tutberidze-to-jump-a-quad/#google_vignette )
- Anna Shcherbakova (RUS) -
- Alexandra Trusova (RUS) - ...is still recovering from a stress fracture. (November 2021) (https://m.facebook.com/story.php?id=100063818712758&story_fbid=10161342568417538 )
- Loena Hendrickx (BEL) - a 2016 stress fracture in her back, later a bone bruise on her landing knee ( https://www.nbcsports.com/olympics/...rise-making-grand-prix-debut-at-skate-america )
- Kaori Sakamoto (JPN) - Due to a stress fracture in her right shinbone, she stayed off the ice in October 2015 and resumed skating without jumps in November. (Wikipedia)
- Rika Kihira (JPN) - Kihira withdrew from the 2021–22 Japan Championships due to a talus stress fracture in her right foot, first discovered in July 2021 (Wikipedia)
- Alysa Liu (USA) -
- Mariah Bell (USA)
- Young You (KOR) -
- Anastasiia Gubanova (GEO) -
- Haein Lee (KOR) - In 2019, she suffered from a stress fracture in her ankle ( https://fs-gossips.com/haein-lee-no...ics-became-the-driving-force-for-development/ )
- Isabeau Levito (USA) -...After recovering from an unspecified lower-body injury, Levito competed at her first senior level U.S. Championships in January 2022. (Wikipedia)
...Oh no, Isabeau had a right-leg stress fracture (https://www.goldenskate.com/forum/t...mens-short-program.90214/page-12#post-2884201 )
- Chaeyeon Kim (KOR)
- Nicole Schott (GER)
- Kimmie Repond (SUI)
- Mone Chiba (JPN)

---------------
In case of Kanako Murakami - she had more stress fractures, one in 2017. She didn't interupt her senior seasons, so I suspect that she had those fractures sooner.

58 ladies - 27 ladies with known stress fracture from Internet sources.

1) That is 46.55 % of top 7 ladies in past 20 seasons with stress fractures. (Real number will be higher.)
2) And now, take a look at dates of stress fractures. Some ideas? Mention how many ladies had stress fracture in summer before the Olympic season, during Olympic season or in post-Olympic season.

It is not that surprising because Olympic season is very important so skater tendens to increase load.
Post-Olympic season with skater being extremely exhausted from Olympic season (both mentally and physically) and it is new beginning - new Olympic cycle with new starts, new hopes.

It leads to first preliminary idea - in Olympic season and post-Olympic season ladies are more prone to stress fractures injury.

If it confirms it will naturally lead to suggestion for skaters and their teams for those periods - to re-think increase of load, IF TO INCREASE AT ALL, to be more aware of pain / increase of pain and other symptoms suggesting that there can be health problem. Because there is a high probability that overlooking these things lady may lead herself to stress fracture with consequences of it. If increasing load goes hand in hand to "get into top shape" mode - more exercises and still quite typically decrease amount of calories - probability of stress fracture can be even higher.
 

figureskatingandrainbows

It's Oka ShinnosuSLAY Season!
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I can speak to Yuma's stress fracture in the 2022-23 season, the details of which he has disclosed in several interviews. His was caused by over-training, as diagnosed by medical professionals. He noticed pain during a summer ice show, but continued to skate through it to finish out the show before seeing a doctor. He went back to training before it was fully healed in an attempt to qualify for a home Worlds, which did not end well for him. Afterwards, his father, who is also his coach, urged him to think about his long-term career rather than the short term, even as Yuma was despondent and wanted to keep on skating. Ultimately, he took a break for the stress fracture to fully heal, and managed to make a full recovery in a year. I think PapaCoach Masakazu felt so strongly on this issue because his career was partially ended by chronic injuries, and he wanted to protect his son from this issue. His whole team has now become more proactive to prevent injury. During his break from skating, he began to work with a nutritionist to improve sleeping and eating habits to reduce future injury. He also spends less time on-ice now, and does more off-ice training that isn't as hard on the body. Crucially, he has also started taking off one day a week. Initially, he says he was skeptical about it, but it has helped him in the long run to feel more refreshed and give his body time to heal.

I can't speak to what athletes should or should not be doing, but I do think Yuma's case shows that training at an elite level can lead to stress fractures and chronic injuries very easily. What is important is to have a team around you that prioritises your health, taking time off to heal when you have an injury, and doing all you can to minimize the impact on your body. You can take several months off the ice or train one day less a week and still come back to win a silver medal at Worlds. We cannot prevent all injuries, but we can take steps to reduce their impact and focus on preserving the athletes' career. I just wish that more coaches felt the same way and were much better at encouraging their athletes to stop and rest when they need to.
 

icewhite

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Dec 7, 2022
Top sport is never healthy you are right.

There are sports that are much healthier though. I often see that in skaters' interviews, especially from Russia: Elite sports is just not healthy. But it seems to me there are huge differences and apart from the sports with worse concussion/brain damage risk it seems to me figure skating (if tough jumps are included) is among the worst.

I just struggle to see how, even if you do not "overload" it is remotely possible to do hundreds of jumps a week on ice, while not yet fully grown, for years, without it being a small catastrophe for the body.
The way I read it part of the low numbers in the studies comes from other disciplines being included.

But the attitude in figure skating is definitely making it worse than it needs to be, yes. Especially with young kids it seems crazy to me.
 

Mathematician

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There are sports that are much healthier though. I often see that in skaters' interviews, especially from Russia: Elite sports is just not healthy. But it seems to me there are huge differences and apart from the sports with worse concussion/brain damage risk it seems to me figure skating (if tough jumps are included) is among the worst.

I just struggle to see how, even if you do not "overload" it is remotely possible to do hundreds of jumps a week on ice, while not yet fully grown, for years, without it being a small catastrophe for the body.
The way I read it part of the low numbers in the studies comes from other disciplines being included.

But the attitude in figure skating is definitely making it worse than it needs to be, yes. Especially with young kids it seems crazy to me.
Accumulated trauma and missed seasons are of course inevitable and not the end of the world, but I think its important we learn as much as possible about this so careers arent ended early over it.

For example today's boxers have significantly different sparring regimes than those a few decades ago as we've become more sophisticated about CTE (since CTE occurs much more from constant sparring actually than the fight itself) and the skill level has not decreased. Though of course many long-term athletes do still start to suffer from things like memory loss or behavioural changed the health has overall become much more reasonable.

I do think with enough effort we can evolve the sport towards longevity. The current technical era of skating is not very old, even just in regards to the level of triple jumps, nevermind the quadsters.

I wonder if we could actually learn much more from studying the girls who didnt suffer chronic injuries rather than those who did?

I think we need to invent more sophisticated training methods focused on the constituents of technique and strength/athleticism rather than raw repetition on ice. I also think nutrition is extremely important, especially for recovery if not prevention.
 

4everchan

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I do wish that training regimens of skaters who did not get repeated stress fractures vs. those who did get stress fractures would be compared.

I always wonder what Professor Mishin and Elizaveta Tuktamysheva were doing right all those years!
Could be combo of many factors from good technique to genetics, to reasonable training loads
 

4everchan

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Yes, but it would be good to know the relative importance of things.
Of course, but I doubt there is a known and exact course of action to prevent them, considering the number of cases as listed above. I don't think that we can draw conclusions from one athlete, like Liza, to establish a better training strategy.

Also, if it's like musicians and tendonitis : I bet there are many skaters who do not disclose their stress fractures. Who knows, maybe Liza had one and took some time off to heal it and we didn't hear about it.
 

rabidline

Final Flight
Joined
Aug 16, 2018
1) That is 46.55 % of top 7 ladies in past 20 seasons with stress fractures. (Real number will be higher.)
2) And now, take a look at dates of stress fractures. Some ideas? Mention how many ladies had stress fracture in summer before the Olympic season, during Olympic season or in post-Olympic season.

It is not that surprising because Olympic season is very important so skater tendens to increase load.
Post-Olympic season with skater being extremely exhausted from Olympic season (both mentally and physically) and it is new beginning - new Olympic cycle with new starts, new hopes.

It leads to first preliminary idea - in Olympic season and post-Olympic season ladies are more prone to stress fractures injury.

If it confirms it will naturally lead to suggestion for skaters and their teams for those periods - to re-think increase of load, IF TO INCREASE AT ALL, to be more aware of pain / increase of pain and other symptoms suggesting that there can be health problem. Because there is a high probability that overlooking these things lady may lead herself to stress fracture with consequences of it. If increasing load goes hand in hand to "get into top shape" mode - more exercises and still quite typically decrease amount of calories - probability of stress fracture can be even higher.
The first preliminary idea is definitely interesting - but also I think we have to take into account that there is a higher scrutiny on figure skaters around the Olympic season, it being one of the most high profile Winter Olympics sport. So high profile absences from important competitions during that period invites bigger attention and curiosity, and that's when the stress fracture is usually disclosed.

While I do think it's impossible for skaters to completely avoid injuries and fractures in the sport, having the data can be handy in analyzing the trends and (hopefully) deciding to what extent the skater wants to push themselves. For some, winning or medaling at the Olympics is the once in a lifetime breakthrough that can change their lives so I can see them risking their future career for that. And for some others, there may be bigger opportunities elsewhere.

Like take example what @figureskatingandrainbows has shared regarding Yuma's approach to it- his stress fracture was found immediately after 2022 Olympic season ends, and you can see how his perspective went against his father's perspective, the short term vs. long term view on it. Was it a loss to him that he couldn't compete right after he won the Olympic silver medalist? Sure, but when you weigh it against him recovering better and having a better chance for the 2026 Olympics, one lost season may be the difference between a career-ending injury and a chance to medal in 2 straight Olympics.
 

Mathematician

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Of course, but I doubt there is a known and exact course of action to prevent them, considering the number of cases as listed above. I don't think that we can draw conclusions from one athlete, like Liza, to establish a better training strategy.

Also, if it's like musicians and tendonitis : I bet there are many skaters who do not disclose their stress fractures. Who knows, maybe Liza had one and took some time off to heal it and we didn't hear about it.

Of course we cant fully prevent them, but there is no way we cant reduce them and save careers, which is worth it. To revert to the boxing analogy, many people would have said years ago: "They are hitting themselves in the face all day! How can you possibly avoid brain damage? Its the name of the game." Alas we have become so much more intelligent with our regime and saved many, many minds from permanent disability. There are also athletes than just Tuktamysheva who seem to have been free from severe chronic injury. I think enough to extrapolate a lot of helpful practices. Even if Tuktamysheva did have a short undisclosed period of healing the relative length of her career is still very relevant to study.
 

4everchan

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Of course we cant fully prevent them, but there is no way we cant reduce them and save careers, which is worth it. To revert to the boxing analogy, many people would have said years ago: "They are hitting themselves in the face all day! How can you possibly avoid brain damage? Its the name of the game." Alas we have become so much more intelligent with our regime and saved many, many minds from permanent disability. There are also athletes than just Tuktamysheva who seem to have been free from severe chronic injury. I think enough to extrapolate a lot of helpful practices. Even if Tuktamysheva did have a short undisclosed period of healing the relative length of her career is still very relevant to study.
The real way to prevent them I believe would be to monitor for that issue closely. Whenever an athlete feels a bit of pain, they'd need to get a proper medical advice. This way, the recovery/healing time may be less long as the injury wouldn't get severe. The athletes need to get out of the "no pain no gain" mentality and listen to their bodies better. I think that's probably the only way to do it. The problem is that some of these athletes are perhaps too young to be aware of their body's health enough to identify such risks.
 

Mathematician

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The real way to prevent them I believe would be to monitor for that issue closely. Whenever an athlete feels a bit of pain, they'd need to get a proper medical advice. This way, the recovery/healing time may be less long as the injury wouldn't get severe. The athletes need to get out of the "no pain no gain" mentality and listen to their bodies better. I think that's probably the only way to do it. The problem is that some of these athletes are perhaps too young to be aware of their body's health enough to identify such risks.
Yea I would agree but earlier we were talking about how athletes usually dont actually feel pain or realize anything is wrong until its too late. Thing is I dont even think no pain no gain is a big thing anymore. I mean Zinina got kicked out of AOP just for training when she wasnt supposed to (because she was injured). I see that even Eteri's camp that is known for being hardcore is extremely strict about athletes not training when injured (I heard Akateva also got in some trouble for training too early). So there doesnt seem to be a mentality that pushes athletes to train through injury or pain. I really think our problem is intrinsic to the entire training system at its core about how we believe results are to be achieved and not an isolated constituent like just mentality.
 

rabidline

Final Flight
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Aug 16, 2018
There are many great ideas and mentions (I knew you will bring interesting things)!

It will take me longer time to react as I don't have that much time overall.

But thank you once again!
Thanks for starting this thread! I think the data you collected may end up incomplete and/or too flawed to make a proper scientific conclusion, but this is probably the first time someone tried to lay out all the data based on confirmed information and timeline, which I appreciate.
 

gkelly

Record Breaker
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Jul 26, 2003
There will be pain without injury, e.g., sore muscles the day after working harder or working on different skills or returning from a break. Or just the immediate impact of falling, which dissipates within couple of minutes.

The trick is learning to distinguish pain that is appropriate to work through/shake off vs. pain that is a warning sign of acute injury or of long-term injury processes such as the development of stress fractures. Those need to be checked out and addressed.
 

surimi

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I would like you to write any skater I didn't find on the Internet with source (article, forum, or somebody told you).

I want to collect single men, but I need time. So I will appreciate if you write. And cases of repeated stress fractures should get more attention.
Okay, so I'll try to keep it short. :) Older sources for Japanese skaters are not so easy to find these days, and I'd have to browse through the many pages of Sota's fanfest for interview translations, the videos I have seen are often not available anymore... but here's at least one interview which is still around, and works well with Google Translate: https://www.walkerplus.com/trend/matome/article/131458/ (it doesn't cover everything, but the main points are there).

AFAIK, Sota is the only active top singles skater whose landing leg ankle was broken 3 consecutive times, and who managed to return to world top ranks (currently #10 in world rankings, IIRC). A very similar case is Russia's Alexei Erokhov, also with 3 fractures, yet able to land harder quads than 4T/S by now. Only, in his case, I believe it was the non-landing foot ankle? I don't recall, but @CrazyKittenLady would know more for sure!

So...
Sota had turned 16 just two months before his first stress fracture happened. It was March 2016, and he was to leave for Junior World Championships where he was the main favorite, along with Daniel Samohin. On the day of departure for JWC, Sota broke his right ankle while attempting to jump the 3A during morning practice. There must have been a lot of pressure on him because of the importance of JWC, and Sota trained through pain he had been feeling for some time before the actual injury happened. I cannot find a source now, but I read the pain was intense and he had trouble skating, but pressed on, and unwisely decided to go for a 3A, which was the last straw. Apparently, the fracture was a full one, not just a crack, as he reportedly said he could hear the sound of his bone snapping.
> The rehabilitation went well, and 2 months later, he was back on the ice and practicing. According to this post, 3 months were necessary for full recovery, but he was back on the ice on May 21, so not a full 3 months since the injury (which was around March 12 IIRC). He skated in two ice shows in early to mid-July, performing doubles including the axel, plus 3S and 3T.
> In late July, the second fracture happened in the same spot as the previous one. Again, he took time off competitions, and did rehab. He was scheduled to turn senior in the upcoming season, and was assigned to France and Japan for senior GP. I believe he was also scheduled for the Canadian Challenger, but I'm not 100% sure. It was confirmed by a JSF official he was also a hopeful for the 2018 Olympics, so the 2016-17 season was important for him, which explains his eagerness to be back on ice ASAP.
> He was hoping to skate at least at West Japan sectionals in late October, but suffered his third and last fracture in either September or October, again in the same spot.
> Sota underwent a surgery in September 2016, during which 2 bolts were inserted into his ankle. After his third fracture, he underwent one more surgery in December, and one more bolt was placed into his ankle to hold the bone and the other two bolts in place. He has 3 in his foot now.
> His subsequent rehab was long and difficult. He was depressed, wanted to quit skating 'many times', and was just going to school and spending time in his room, only meeting his friends occasionally. There were times when he wondered if he'd be able to walk normally again, as walking was painful for him. He said he'd forgotten how to interact with other skaters during that time. However, he missed skating too much, and his love for FS won in the end. His break from skating lasted until the end of May 2017, so overall, he was gone from competitions for longer than a year. His first competition was Chubu regionals in September 2017, where he performed single jumps (he resumed jump training that same month), and he said he was afraid to jump even those. The pain in his ankle lingered for about 2 years, requiring rehab, before it went away fully.
> From autumn 2017, he was improving quite quickly, eventually adding a 4T (Nationals 2018), and 4S that he used to struggle with in juniors. He hasn't reported any issues with his right ankle since, and by now, he's successfully landed a 4F and 4Lz outside competitions.

Factors, aside from intense training:
- Sota was growing when he got injured, so his bones must have been unstable. I don't recall how tall he was before the injury, but reports mentioned he grew quite a bit in that year, citing 170 cm before the second fracture. (It's 172-3 now when he's stopped growing) He's among the taller Japanese male skaters.
- he says his right leg is a bit bow-legged, and photos confirm that. I am not sure if it was the case before the injury, but it's likely, so we can possibly tick off the 'abnormalities' box. I'm afraid that in your distinction of '1) too big load on normal bone / 2) normal load on abnormal bone ', we could be looking at a mixed category - 'abnormal load on abnormal bone' in Sota's case -_-
- quads and 3A (which ultimately caused his injury) have never been Sota's strength. Some say he has strange technique with relatively loose, bent legs sometimes, in hard jumps.
- we can likely cross out inadequate nutrition. Yes, he watches his food intake a bit in high season, but he's always said he loves eating, and a TV show about a 15-y-o. Sota said 'yoku tabe' ('eats a lot') about him in the intro. He was thin, but I doubt he was malnourished.
- you can get your foot re-fractured doing less than triples: this post from Sota's fanfest refers to Daichi Miyata, I believe, and says Daichi's second fracture happened when he was jumping a 2Lo.

Yikes, what a wall of text again :palmf: Well, that's what happens when I talk about Sota, lol. But I'm very optimistic about when he becomes a coach (which he wants to). He's been through hell with his foot, and he has been taking better care of himself recently (sans the 4F plans... grumble...), including one day off per week. I'm sure he'll make his students' health his priority, and won't allow them to skate through pain. ☺️
 
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skatingfan4ever

"Our blade takes us in the most amazing places."
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I find this article on Andrew Torgashev before 2023 Worlds very interesting. I'm sharing this because I think the quotes from Andrew are quite telling. He pushed too hard and paid the price. And this isn't even his full injury history. In his Fan Fest, when we're not celebrating his skating, a lot of it is/was, "He's injured again" or "I hope he's not injured again and that's why we've heard nothing lately" or "He WD from such-and-such competition." Hoping for the best for this season. :pray:

At [Andrew Torgashev's] first world junior championships, when he finished 10th, the field included Shoma Uno of Japan, Jin Boyang of China and Nathan Chen of the United States. Those three would go on to win an Olympic title and three world titles (Chen), two Olympic medals and a world title (Uno) and two world medals (Jin). [My Note: Andrew was only 13 years old then.]

A similar career path is what others expected of Torgashev, and he soon came to have the same expectations. That turned out to not be a good mental space for him.

“I think I was really putting expectations and wants in front of how I was actually going to get to those places,” Torgashev said. “And, of course, that just led to injury and frustration because I was doing things the wrong way.”

After winning the 2015 junior national title [at age 13], he tried to speed up the process of learning quadruple jumps, which have become the coin of the realm in elite men’s skating. The result: a broken ankle, sustained while trying a quad toe loop, which required surgery to stabilize the tibia with three screws that were removed six months later. He would miss the entire 2015-16 season.

“My mentality always was to just grind as much as I could until I realized that if you grind something too much, it turns into dust,” Torgashev said. “So I needed to build myself instead of just work as hard as I could.”

Torgashev slowly worked his way up through the U.S. ranks, finishing fifth at the 2020 U.S. Championships. After that, he finished an unsatisfactory eighth at the 2020 World Junior Championships.

Andrew changed coaches in October 2020 to Rafael Artunian. But, his injury saga continued...

For the next two seasons, a hard-to-diagnose right foot injury forced Torgashev to learn Arutunian’s methods while observing from the stands. He was unable to compete in both the 2020-21 and 2021-22 seasons, and his aerobic activity was limited to low resistance pedaling of an exercise bike. Stymied, he wondered at times if he should say, “Enough.”

“I truly almost did,” he said. “I had moved out to California and was living on my own for the first time, and it was just a tough situation to be in, and I was wondering what else life held for me outside of skating.

“But then I quickly came to the realization that I just wasn’t ready to let this go yet. I still have love for the sport, and I felt like I hadn’t maxed out my potential. For all the people that helped me along the way, especially my parents, I couldn’t just let it go without giving it my best shot.”

That became possible last summer, after the Florida doctor who had done the ankle surgery diagnosed the foot injury as a dislocated metatarsal and offered him the choice of another surgery or a rehab program to strengthen the foot and keep the bone in place. He chose rehab. So far, so good.
I believe this long foot injury was initially diagnosed as a stress fracture. Maybe he had other ones in the past.
 
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Mar 21, 2018
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We have just heard it a few of the stories, but I find it interesting that it turns out a lot of them were already pushing through pain. It seems it´s possible to avoid the stress fracture if they stop and rest when they experience pain, it´s a better way for the individuals to know their limits then try to quantify a formula for training load. Not as easy as it sounds though, because I think obviously it´s probably difficult to tell when there is harmless pain and when it´s not, and figure skaters are used to pain to the level they really don´t know what is normal pain.

For instance, my instinct as a normal person, never done figure skating, would be to stop right away if there was any pain. I would take a break, then try again - and if the pain persisted as bad as before or got worse, I would simply stop.
 
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