Injured Bomber Joe Daniher says a more patient approach will be the key to his rehabilitation from osteitis pubis this pre-season.
The ongoing groin injury has derailed Daniher’s past two premiership campaigns, holding him back to just 11 out of a possible 45 games.
But an off-season trip to a specialist in Ireland has him confident that he is ready to get back to his best.
Teammate James Stewart – who is battling a groin injury of his own – and club physio Nick Kane joined Daniher in Dublin to gain valuable lessons ahead of the pre-season.
He said he feels he has “all of the tools now” to make a successful return to the field, with a clear focus on carefully working his way back to full fitness.
“To see a specialist overseas and to get their two bobs in our rehab program and what we’ve been doing. A lot of it was just reassuring us that we are doing the right thing and that we’re not far away from breaking through and running really strongly,” Daniher said on Thursday.
“A lot of it now is about diligence and patience. A couple of times I’ve been quite impatient and I’ve pushed it and pushed it, and that might have cost me two or three weeks at times.
“It’s a really complicated injury and it’s something I’ve been dealing with and learning about right through this period.
“I’ve been in no better position to attack my rehab and I’m really confident that I’ve got a full summer to get right and play some consistent footy next year.”
Daniher has already displayed his patience, making the decision to reel in his training load for the good of his long-term future.
“I’m not running at the moment, I’ve just pulled that back again to work on some strength things,” he said.
“I started running during the off-season and found that once I got up to a really high intensity, I probably wasn’t coping with that load.
“I pulled it back and I’m going to work on some really key strength markers and hopefully I’ll be back running in about 10 days.”
Having returned early to The Hangar ahead of the official start of his pre-season on Monday, Daniher is feeling “optimistic” about the prospect of an AFL return.
And while all of his energy is currently being dedicated to getting his body right, he still has his eyes set on the 2020 season.
“The first point of call has been my body and that’s been the priority for now; getting my body to a position where I can train really hard and have that sustained continuity for a long period of time.
“Following that, (the priority) would be getting out and playing for the football club and hopefully offering something on the field.
“I’m looking forward to having a really enjoyable, hard-working season and hopefully getting a few more games in than I’ve had in the last two years.”