Injuries are a common issue for students at BYU-Idaho, especially those involved in sports. 

Both Recreational and Competitive Sports are an integral part of life for the students of BYU-I. Unfortunately, those who are the most involved in sports are often faced with the difficulty of sustaining and recovering from mild to serious sports injuries.

Lee Woodard, a junior studying recreation management, works within the RecSports program as head game day lead, making sure all the games run smoothly at night.

“It’s rare to go through a night without some kind of injury,” he said.“I would say we get at least three minor injuries a night.”

He said usually two serious injuries occur each semester that require an ambulance.

Injuries can be taxing on students, not only physically, but mentally and emotionally as well, Woodard said.

To many students, being able to play sports means everything, said Irene Routson, a junior also studying recreation management.

“Sports are the only thing that bring me joy,” she said.

Sports give students an outlet for their stress, a break from their studies, opportunities to socialize and much more, Routson said. Sustaining sports injuries can temporarily or even permanently remove these important factors from their lives.

“Sports have been a big part of my life,” said Logan Peterson, a sophomore studying biology.“Take that away, and my life would be boring.”

Peterson, Routson and Woodard, like many other students, have experienced both minor and serious injuries from playing sports.

Peterson said that after he broke his wrist playing football, he went through a painful healing process that involved his wrist being re-broken and then placed in a cast for about a month and a half.

Peterson said the hardest part about the recovery process was not being able to participate in sports.

“Sitting out was miserable,” he said, “All I wanted to do was play.”

Peterson said his approach to recovery was to follow the advice of his doctors so he could heal as quickly as possible and get back in the game. By following the counsel given to him, he was able to fully recover and continue playing football and the other sports he enjoys.

Routson said her approach to injury is more along the lines of the old saying, “Rub some dirt on it, and get back in the game.” 

After sustaining injuries including broken toes and fingers, sprained ankles, concussions and whiplash, she treated them herself and got back in the game. She did not trust doctors, and sitting out was not really an option for her. 

She said that looking back, she has some lasting side effects from her injuries.

Routson said she does not regret not going to see a doctor and still treats her own injuries the same way.

Woodard said he has learned a lesson on the necessity of waiting after experiencing multiple injuries.

“I’ve always been one to start playing again too early after an injury,” he said.

He said he has learned from certain injuries that he has to be careful and not push the limits. 

Despite their experiences of past injuries, the three athletes feel the positives of playing sports outweigh the risks of future injuries.

“I don’t want to stop doing what I love,” Routson said.