Ski injuries suck, no doubt about it. They hurt, they can be very expensive, and they can ruin your ski season or even keep you off the slopes for life. I had a friend who tore his ACL while skiing for the first time, and now he completely refuses to ever ski again. I had another buddy tear his ACL and he had to take a year and a half off from skiing. One friend broke his elbow, season over. One friend got a fairly major concussion, didn’t ski for several years. Whether it’s the actual injury or the mental barrier built by injuries, they can destroy your ability to shred.
Not everyone will let a life changing injury change their ability to ski, though. I present to you, Jimmy Jan! This 22-year-old is from Newcastle, New South Wales. He’s a medical student and a self proclaimed adrenaline junkie, but on August 9, 2021, Jan landed on his head after accidentally tossing a semi backflip, leading to a spinal injury that left him paralyzed from the waist down.
“I landed the first jump, easy peasy, and was approaching the second jump which is considerably larger and I had some considerable speed going. I’m hitting the second jump, I get to the top and I didn’t have my weight where it needed to be. So I performed the world’s worst backflip, and not on purpose. I caught a few metres of air and remember thinking “oh cr*p, this is going to hurt”, and that’s the last thing I remember because a few seconds later I landed directly on my head and lost consciousness.” – Jimmy Jan according to Daily Mail
With only about a 2% chance of feeling ever returning to his legs, most may assume his skiing days were over. But, this past June, Jimmy began training with Tom Hodgiflora, a Paralympic development coach, to ski once again. For the 12 month anniversary of the accident, Jimmy Jan was once again on the slopes, shredding a lot harder than a lot of people I know, but now in a sit ski.
12 months since i blew the back out, now im back out #skiing #paralyzed #sci
Image Credit: jimmyjan on TikTok