When a season ending knee injury caught Lindsey Van (Park City, UT) off guard mid way through the 2008 winter, the 12-time women's jumping champion could have taken her plight as an opportunity to rest.
But, while she made her way back to the hill this season, rest hasn't been a big part of Van's vocabulary as she rehabbed, did yoga and coached herself back to health.
"I'm definitely excited to be back. I took three jumps the other day and they were alright," Van said.
Van, who coached her teammates while their coach was away in Europe, credits her leadership experience with keeping her close to the sport and eager to get back.
"It was a good experience. It kept me with the sport more than I would have been had I not been doing it. I really enjoyed it," Van said. "It was definitely different and I'm glad I got to work with these ladies. It was fun to work with high-level athletes."
According to Van, coaching a group of her peers was a little strange, but the group quickly adapted.
"It was [hard] at first, but they got used to it pretty fast because that's just how it had to be," Van said.
Van also packed her days with yoga and rehab for her knee, but says she's excited to be back and ready to start competing because, " It feels normal to me. I felt out of place when I was injured and I feel back where I should be now."