Last year, now fifteen-year-old Cokie hurt herself walking across the street. Though she had an acute ankle sprain, her pre-existing ankle pain and chronic meniscal injury made it impossible for this competitive swimmer to walk without a brace for her ankle and knee, let alone continue to compete in her sport.
Cokie could not walk without a limp, perform active squats or lunges or even walk down the street pain-free. Working with Isha Mody, her physical therapist at Sutton Place Physical and Aquatic Therapy, Cokie focused on strengthening her injured ankle, knee, hip and core while also improving her balance.
Now, 3 months later, Cokie has returned to pain-free swimming and achieved personal best times in the pool. "Cokie was always very eager to try newer and harder exercises," added Isha Mody, "The most challenging part of rehab for Cokie was when she went back in the water to swim. When she felt pain, she worked through it. Having her understand the difference between "good pain" and "bad pain" was essential, and she was open to this concept and adapted it intelligently in her swim practices. This is a complex concept to grasp for an adult, and so for a teen, it was impressive".
"Isha and Sutton Place are a big reason that I was able to get to where I am now," adds Cokie. "I opted to participate in school remotely this winter instead of returning to boarding school, in part to continue to rehab."
"I was in pain and just happy Isha could help me get stronger. Everyone was so friendly. I had a chance to be with my family and focus on getting back into swim shape," adds Cokie.
Today, Cokie is back to a full competitive training schedule and looking forward to swimming in the Junior Olympics at the end of July.
We all wish Cokie the best and can't wait to root for her at her next swim meet.
Photo Credit: Julie Brimberg Photography