"The lip landed right on my knee and pulled my front leg backwards"
Surfersvillage Global Surf News, 7 January, 2014 - 2014 came bearing good news for Portuguese leading talent Tiago Pires 33, whose traumatic knee-injury sustained in early spring last year kept from surfing most events on the 2013 World Championship Tour. After deliberations took place throughout the Hawaiian leg of events, ASP officials announced that Pires would receive the coveted injury wildcard and be offered another chance at surfing with the World’s Elite.
We just caught up with Tiago about his past season, rehab and looking at getting another shot at the World Title race next year.
“Hi Tiago, tell us how you feel after receiving the news ?
- I feel very relieved as I knew it was going to be a very tough decision for ASP. Usually we never have so many injuries in the same year and 2013 was a crazy one for that matter. Reading that email was almost like finding out I had qualified for the first time. Just a very positive and joyful news.
2013 was a tough one for you, can you remind us all what happened ?
- Yes. It was after I got back from the Aussie leg and the waves were pumping for a week long non stop. I was surfing and training in the Gym like never before and feeling as good as it gets. I had many amazing sessions in Supertubes, Carcavelos, Ericeira and then Santa Cruz where I got hurt. This one morning it was only myself and two other friends and the waves were absolutely perfect. I had had my fair share of crazy barrels and had surfed for about two hours.
This wave where I got hurt was one of those I should've had watching from the beach already! I was over confident after so many barrels and decided to go on a super late but amazingly looking one. As I was air dropping into the barrel my inside rail didn't catch and the board turn left facing straight to beach. The lip landed right on my knee and pulled my front leg backwards really bad. I instantly felt an horrible pain and that was it. I was done.
Explain us what it takes to get back to your 100% after such an injury.
- I started doing physiotherapy right way. And it was a twice-a-day kind of deal for about 3 months before I re-started surfing. Then in September I had another episode where I landed on my knee again and it got worse again.
After surfing for two months with the same pain I decided to change doctor and went to Barcelona to get another person to look at it. After I got back from Spain and with an infiltration of Plasma done in my knee I was forbidden to surf until today (mid-december). At the moment I'm feeling way better, doing a very intense muscle rehabilitation and I'm confident that I will be 100% pretty soon. Staying positive is the key!
Tiago Pires will be surfing in the opening leg of events starting March 1-12 at the Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast in Australia. For more information about Tiago, check out his profile on www.aspeurope.com