Canyoning, Medical, Tips


A woman with a neck-shoulder injury

For x reasons you were injured. You sat at home for recovery. And now you’re thinking of going back to the canyons. Chill.

Returning to the canyons might be a little bit more difficult than canyoning itself. Even harder than starting as a beginner. Why? Because in your head there are thoughts of the type “I must cover the lost ground”, “I must quickly find a rhythm to catch my power again”, “I must catch up with my friends who haven’t stop for a bit!” Thoughts like that can only lead to further injury and relapse.

The basic rule is “listen to your body”. Pain is a good indicator of whether your injury is over, whether you can continue and for how long, whether you should return to the safety of your… couch for some more relaxation. If it hurts, then more recovery is needed. And you can’t do many things… Well, actually you can!

Estimating that you already have visited a doctor, are following a prescription, taking any meds appropriate for your injury, before thinking of getting in a canyon again physically you can still go canyoning mentally. I know you might think I am crazy, that you are in pain and totally frustrated but before you turn my idea down have in mind that I have been there.

Well, when recovering from an injury look into the future:

  • See yourself healthy and strong, rappelling your favourite waterfall.
  • Keep in touch with your canyoning friends at all cost. If they don’t call you then you call them. Ask them about their plans. Share their enthusiasm!
  • Don’t put yourself down with criticism. An injury is something that you could consider as a gift. As a lesson that needs to be taken into consideration. Sometimes it can lead a person to more evolution and growth.
  • Find the courage to clean and maintain your gear.
  • Re-organise your canyoning closet.
  • Refresh your personal first-aid kit.
  • Check your headlight’s batteries.
  • If needed, order new gear from your favourite e-shop.
  • Watch canyoning videos in various places on earth.
  • Arrange your photos and videos galleries.
  • Print your favourite photo with yourself descending the most demanding waterfall and imagine descending it again.
  • Plan your participation to upcoming canyoning meetings, events and festivals.

Soon the time will pass and you will be fully recovered. The trickiest part of all is to stay tuned with your canyoning friends. In my case (I was not so persistent in keeping contact with them) I had to make new friends and my old gang was no longer part of my canyoning life. Everything is possible to happen – but the most important tip of all is to not let fear stop you from your favourite sport!

Good luck and happy canyoning – again!

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