Recovering from a Climbing Concussion

I celebrated my 14th birthday in December by doing a mock regionals and our gym’s first ever lock-in. Those were great, but, hands down, this has been one of the hardest months for me.

On December 7th, I went to climbing class with a great attitude considering it was the last push before regionals. Our coaches decided to have us on ropes. My friend Iza and I were partners, and she was leading a tricky route. When she was at the third clip going for a small crimp, she fell. The heel of her foot whammed into my head, but fortunately I was still able to catch her.

Rock climbing teammates
Not being able to compete because of a concussion was tough, but my teammates and coaches were awesome!

At first we laughed and giggled, after five minutes, I found myself sitting on the bench, feeling very lethargic and sleepy and holding an ice pack on my head. My coach Tim made a great call and recommended my mother pick me up and take me to the emergency room. I was dizzy and very slow walking on our way in to the ER. As soon as we explained my injury was from rock climbing, the medical team took it a bit more seriously and ran me through some tests, balancing and remembering numbers.

As soon as they said I had a mild concussion, tears started pouring down my face. I knew what was going to happen – that I’d have to miss regionals. I knew in the back of my mind I wouldn’t be able to compete, but I didn’t want to let it come true.

I stayed home from school for three days. I needed the rest, but I was very sad even thinking about climbing. I’d spent the whole season working up to this one competition, and now it was all wasted. On Wednesday, I went to climbing class because it’s a team sport. It was hard being in the background watching everybody else climb. Again my amazing coaches helped me get through this hard time and put positive thoughts in my head.

By Friday, I was sadly still having headaches and made the call to not compete on Saturday. I attended the event and watched my teammates compete. They did an amazing job!

I was back to normal the next week and was cleared by my doctor to start lightly climbing again. Now it is winter break, and it feels great to relax and enjoy winter here in Colorado. I wish all Dragonwing girls happy holidays and a wonderful start to the New Year.

Rock Climbing through the Holidays

Hello Dragonwing girls!

I hope all of you are having a great school year and that Halloween was fun. It seems like a long time ago now!

This year, I dressed up as a tomato, by stuffing pillows in a big red shirt then putting on a green headband. Here I am with a few friends.

Dressed up as a tomato for Halloween

My rock climbing gym also put on a special Halloween comp for the youth programs. I was glad to place 2nd! The best costumes were worn by some kids who dressed up as our coaches.

Halloween girls at rocking climbing gym

I’m already looking forward to the next ABS regional championship, which is being hosted by USA Climbing on December 12.

I will happily be participating for my second year in this special competition and sporting my Dragonwing girlgear. Since this will be my second year in this competition, I think I will be more prepared and more confident in my climbing. I also think I’ll be mentally prepared with techniques my coaches taught us like smiling, ways to read the problem, spending time more efficiently, and breathing.

I hope everyone has a great Thanksgiving holiday and break! I’ll be back in December!

Rock Climbing Comps & Coaches

Wow, time has sure flown by! It’s hard to believe that this is my sixth blog post as a Dragonwing girlgear Ambassador!

For the last month, every weekend has been filled with rock climbing competitions. My latest competition was super fun even though I had a cold, which left me with little energy. In that comp, I managed to flash my top 5. A “flash” is where you climb to the top of the wall with no falls or other attempts. As you can see from the photo, I’m still wearing my Un-Dee Mini Workout Shorts!

Dragonwing Ambassador Madi with rock climbing coaches at competition

A couple of weeks ago, I had a little meltdown at rock climbing class. I was doubting myself, thinking “I can’t do that” and “I haven’t progressed.” Eventually I shed a couple of tears. My coaches were so helpful and supportive and really helped me through that horrible mental block. They are amazing.

The weather here in Colorado has started to get chilly, but that doesn’t bother me. I love the cold weather because I can get into a fuzzy blanket and drink hot chocolate! Another reason I love winter is because I love skiing and snowboarding. I have been a snowboarder for a while but last winter tried out skiing and loved it! I’m looking forward to more fun in the snow this winter.

Leave a comment and tell me about your favorite winter sport or activity.