So I ended the 2018/2019 winter season stoked to have earned an invitation to the Project Gold Camp, June 5 – June 12 at Mammoth Mountain! Project Gold is a progression camp designed to take skiing to the next level. It was the best in-class coaching and facilities. The Project Gold athlete selections included top junior athletes from the Rev Tour, Rev Elite Tour, USASA Nationals and select discretion athletes who had outstanding performances this season, like me!
I was hyped to be out with the US Ski Team development coaches, but due to high winds we were confined to Mammoth’s public terrain park for the 1st couple days. Near the end of the second day I over shot the first jump and ended up with my first major concussion. Concussion protocols are no joke, and I was done skiing for the rest of the week. To finally be out west after so many years of trying, it broke my heart that I had to return home a week early.
I wasted no time when I arrived home and started the doctor visits and PT. The most concerning part was that my right eye had trouble tracking; since I hit so hard on the right side of my head when I got the concussion. I had to retrain my eyes to be in sync again. I went to physical therapy for about a month and a half, and had to do exercises three times a day! Continuing with physical therapy, I only missed one airbag session at Maximise, but that was also heartbreaking!
What did I learn on my first trip out West? Speed… that speed is one of the most important factors of the sport. With too much or too little speed, it is the easiest way to get hurt, and always do set-up tricks on any jump under 35 feet!