Sport Hurling

Sunday 20 August 2017

Ger took me apart and then built me back up -- O'Gara

WHILE the exact nature of Shefflin's treatment by Gerard Hartmann is not yet known, the physical therapist helped Ronan O'Gara recover from a similar injury in just five weeks in 2005.

In his 2008 autobiography, O'Gara revealed: "A day before I was due to go into the operating theatre, Ger said he could rehab me without surgery. It was going to be torturous, but if I had the stomach for it we could do it.

"I needed massively intensive, one-on-one attention and Ger was the best in the business. He was my only chance of making the Lions Tour.

"Hiring Ger cost me seven or eight grand but that was the price I was prepared to pay to get myself right. I was in Ger's clinic five days a week, six hours a day, and sometimes we'd do Saturday sessions as well.

Murder

"The regime was murder. The hardest thing I ever had to do in my career. After lunch I used to have a kip for an hour and you'd need it before the afternoon session. It was like he took me apart and built me back up again.

"I went to him with an injured right knee and he identified five other areas of serious weakness in my physical make-up. My left knee, he said, was weak and unstable. That was my good knee!

"There were days in his clinic when I broke down, my body couldn't take it. My mind was making demands that my body couldn't meet. I went through every emotion, from hope to despair and back.

"Before I left Ger's clinic I was doing one-legged hops, jumping off small tables and all kinds of other things. I knew it was all right. I felt like a new man.

"After all the additional work that Ger had done, I (also) had about an extra five metres on my pass off either hand."

Irish Independent

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