Moto Tip | Riding With Injury
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Odds are there will be a time in your “career” when you head to the track at less than full strength or health. If you’re a racer in pursuit of a personal goal, a flare of back pain, tweaked knee, sprained ankle, or jammed wrist won’t keep you away from riding. Jimmy Decotis found himself in that exact position over the last few weeks in the Monster Energy Supercross Series and we wanted to know how the JGRMX/Yoshimura/Suzuki Factory Racing rider took on the challenge, from technique to mental outlook.
When you are hurt, it’s important to ride like you always do. Right now, my hip and pelvis are a little weak, it’s harder to squeeze the bike, so you have to focus through the pain and put emphasis on technique so that you are riding the bike correctly.
You can’t compensate your strength or technique in one place in favor of another, because that’s when you’ll have different issues. Like at Tampa, I couldn’t grip with my legs very well and some the acceleration was getting to me, so I was hanging on even more with my arms, almost too much. If you are compensating, then you really shouldn’t be out there. You need to focus on maintaining your technique despite the pain.
I usually try to relax during the downtime between riding and then a half-hour before the races start, I will do my warmup. For us, there is a long break from practice to the Heat Races and then the Heat Races to the Main Event, so it’s important to stay loose and keep the blood flowing so that you are ready for what’s going to be thrown at you.
It’s important to stretch and stay loose, especially with this injury. I am doing a lot of yoga for muscle stability to strengthen the area around the injury.
I had to make the decision at Tampa. When I was riding, I felt like I couldn’t do it. I got the Toridal shot so that I could ride, got 21st in qualifying, and then got ninth in the Main Event. If you really believe that you can do it through the pain, then it’s okay to do it. But if you are second-guessing yourself and the pain, then you need to call it. I was never questioning if I could be on the track in Tampa; it was more dealing with the pain.