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No place like home for triathlete Brownlee



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Pushing GB triathlete Alistair Brownlee the extra mile

By Emma Deakin
Physiotherapist at the English Institute of Sport

The majority of my time working for the English Institute of Sport (EIS) is spent with the British Triathlon podium squad.

This includes looking after 2009 world champion Alistair Brownlee and I've seen a lot of him this year as he has had to get back to full fitness following an injury.

As well as the weekly support, I'll often travel with the team to deliver support at events. Usually the day before a race I'm involved in activation work with both the boys and the girls so that's any soft tissue work, joint manipulation or release and any last minute preparations for the race.

I'm there at the start of the race for any last-minute treatment and at the end for any urgent support and then after that we'll work on the recovery.

Emma Deakin with Alistair Brownlee
Emma Deakin with Alistair Brownlee

The highlights of my time working with the sport so far have been the 2009 Triathlon World Championships held on the Gold Coast, Australia, which was fantastic for the team as they won five medals overall.

But I think my biggest highlight was last year in Madrid when Alistair won the first World Cup he competed in after returning from injury. It was really rewarding, as he had to do a lot of intensive work in getting back to fitness.

Alistair suffered a stress fracture in his femur so he had to completely stop training all together for a few weeks, which for an elite athlete is really tough. He is not like most athletes so when it came to the "typical recovery" we had to tear up the rule book and work out something which would work for him individually.

As a physiotherapist you are usually involved in the planning stages of recovery until athletes get back into full training. But for Alistair we took more of a full team approach with input from the rest of his EIS and British Triathlon support team - strength & conditioning, nutrition and medical.

We did a lot of work with his coach and Ali also had a great deal of input into it which was really important as with a long-term injury it is often easier to be a bit passive and just let the medical team do their work but he really got involved.

This pushes me as a practitioner and seeing him win is really rewarding.


Emma Deakin works for the English Institute of Sport (EIS) as lead Physiotherapist with the podium, development and academy British Triathlon squads.



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see also
Alistair Brownlee's nightmare season
15 Sep 10 |  World Olympic Dreams
Tour of Alistair Brownlee's house
10 Sep 10 |  World Olympic Dreams
Gomez defeats Brownlees in London
25 Jul 10 |  Triathlon
What it takes to tackle a triathlon
26 Jul 10 |  World Olympic Dreams
Day in the life of Alistair Brownlee
29 Jul 10 |  World Olympic Dreams


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