We Counted Them Out And They All Came Back, No Injuries!

For once in a blue moon West Ham United's overseas players have all returned from International duty injury free! This is not the way it is supposed to be, usually at least one or two return injured usually more so what is going on? When Gary Lewin replaced the Stig as head of the medical team we were promised 'structured' rehabilitation of injured players each working to a tailor made plan, and it's worked!

Even before the International break Lewin had achieved what seemed like the impossible, he managed to have Andy Carroll and Diafra Sakho, Hammers' perennial sick notes, both fit at the same time! It isn't just the forwards to have benefited from the medical chiefs arrival, right across the team his approach is reaping benefits. Strangely enough what has been achieved is not as the result of some new found sports science aid, rather just plain common sense. Having been the England man for many years Gary Lewin is used to dealing with top players highly valued by their clubs and therefore knows how to communicate fitness 'thresholds' with them.

In recent matches players have been quick to 'pull up' when injured rather than trying to 'run it off', the benefit is the risk of lasting damage is greatly reduced, it might be 'old school' to man up but it is now dinosaur thinking! Far too often in the past players have been rushed back to soon, invariably getting re-injured due to lack of fitness rebuilding, that is not the case now. Lewin is meticulous in his planning and keeps details of players past injuries as a reference of what to avoid while also working out individual plans that are incredibly detailed that include psychological issues as well as physical. A key example is Lewin's approach to Andy Carroll's fitness, he arranged to have Carroll driven to and from training just around the time he was nearing full fitness (a) to ensure punctuality and (b) so as not to stress muscles that have been in full use on the training pitch by driving, which any osteopath will tell you is extremely bad if you are recovering from injury.

The 'mental' aspect of Lewin's influence is players are encouraged to think, again it sounds too simple, but it works! Instead of running around like a bull in a china shop, players returning from injury seem to be adhering to to their plans. It has been a ridiculously long time since the club has had such a short injury list, and with the likes of Winston Reid, Cheik Kouyate, Elbows Arnoutovic and Sulkman all returning injury free as well as the English contingent of Aaron Cresswell and Joe Hart, the future looks good, although having so many players available to choose from will present a problem to Slaven Billic, but it's a nice problem to have isn't it?

We think Slav will probably owe Gary Lewin a bottle or two of something nice if things continue this way. - Ed



andycarrollstyle's picture


71 users have voted.
moore 6 legend's picture

Nice 1 gary, fingers crossed could be our best signing!

102 users have voted.
Deluded Hammer's picture

What muscles you can stress pushing gear lever into D and pressing an accelerator and occasionally a brake pedal. Those poor articulated lorry drivers must be going through agony. And as for not "running it off", I presume someone forgot to tell James Collins?

89 users have voted.
nevillenixon's picture

that's why collins is still out injured, and the point about driving after muscle treatment is salient. I should know I have had to have treatment on my back for years due to someone crashing in to the rear of my car at an insane speed.

85 users have voted.

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