Finn-ishing on his own terms

Growing up in Calgary and on the slopes at Canada Olympic Park, Freestyle Skier Finnian Young knows the track like the back of his hand, but a new day-old trick was something he wasn’t as familiar with, causing an unpredicted outcome.

“We were just having a training night and I was doing a trick I just learned the night before” explains Young of his typical practice session on January 31st, 2019. “I went to attempt the trick again and I messed up and spun out, and when I landed my knee felt like it pulled apart.” With an accurate feeling of a serious injury from that fall, the results from the next day’s MRI showed that Finnian suffered a fully torn ACL and some meniscus damage.

“I was pretty upset and feeling done with the sport”, initially said Finnian about his injury as he had been previously navigating retiring the sport in the months prior. He remembers thinking that if he blew his knee that it would put a seal on his long skiing career. A typical recovery for an ACL surgery and rehabilitation can be anywhere from 6 months to a full year, a time that certainly takes a toll on athlete’s goals within sport.

But with the encouraging and hardworking team at CSI Calgary, Finnian knew he would be able persevere through this roadblock. “The support I received from CSI Calgary pulled me back into the sport. Everyone worked so hard for me to get back and I really appreciated that. The team at CSI Calgary were more than just coaches and medical professional figures to me; we developed great relationships which I was able to lean on throughout my recovery process.”

Finnian successfully returned to snow six-months post operation after receiving clearance from his surgeon Dr. Mark Heard. In January 2020, he was back on the pipe preparing for the season ahead. He credits working with the R2P Code team in the testing lab that gave him some reassurance by seeing his improved strength results. “Because of the force plates we were able to track and quantify how strong I was getting and to see that gradual increase of progression gave me the peace of mind to confidently return to my sport.”

The courageous skier retired in July 2020. As much of the world came to a halt after the COVID-19 virus hit, Finnian bravely walked away from the sport knowing that it was time for him to move on. He planned on spending this season skiing and getting back to competition, but the world had different plans which ultimately steered him in the direction of retirement. “I didn’t want my knee to be the reason to take me out of sport, and it didn’t”, reflects Finnian of his successful journey through recovery. He looks back at his time in rehabilitation with the CSI Calgary team fondly with a strong, healthy knee to walk him through the next chapters of his Young life.

Copyright © 2013 Canadian Sport Institute Calgary | All Rights Reserved | Photo Credit : Dave Holland