Apparently it’s quite common and nothing to be too afraid of. She said it was normal and suggested rolling on a tennis ball to alleviate the tension.
“But pain should never be normal!” I thought huffily. “How can they be so blase about it? ” I silently railed.
As a lifelong worry wort, I’m always (ridiculously) fearful that every new little injury I sustain is going to cause long term damage and build up into something serious that threatens to cripple me once I reach old age.
Last year when I twisted my wrist during my second-ever pole lesson, I dealt with it with an unhealthy combination of fear and denial: Like a true moron, I ignored the sharp pain in my wrist caused by over enthusiastically flying into a spin without easing my hand grip, which led me to immediately making the same mistake and hurting it even more.
I then left it alone for an entire five weeks while unwisely continuing with lessons. Once we started learning to climb up the pole and I realised that the pain in my wrist was only going to get worse the more I strained it, I finally decided it was time to let it rest and heal itself.
During that time, I missed my pole terribly and became more and more fearful of the pain in my wrist. Ironically, the more I feared the pain, the more I felt it.
I’d feel sharp twinges while reaching for my bottle of shampoo in the shower, and wore a wrist guard to sleep only to wake up and find it even more sore. “omg, what if it hurts forever and I can never go near a pole again?” I’d fret, while freaking out further as Google told me all the ways to live with chronic tendonitis.
After 3 long months, I got tired of babying it and went for the trial class at my current studio where the pole are much slimmer. I had so much fun that I completely forgot to anticipate and fear the pain. And it slowly dawned on me that the way to overcome injuries is not to keep fearing them.
So while I’m taking necessary precautions during class to protect my back and wrists, I’m not going to worry myself into a hole the next time I feel a little pain anywhere. I might also buy a tennis ball to roll on in the future, like my wise instructor recommended.
And fyi, my back feels almost back to normal!