Team Member Summer Adventures: Mike Ma

Catch up with PSIA-AASI National Team members as they share their summer adventures and how it keeps them on their game for winter. Here’s how PSIA-AASI Adaptive Team member Mike Ma spent his summer.

What’s been your go-to summer activity or big summer adventure?

I had ACL reconstruction in May, so I spent my summer rehabilitating my knee. I was running a race against time to get myself ready to be on snow for this winter. My normal routine of soccer, tennis, and running was replaced with Peloton, indoor rowing, weightlifting, and lots of physical therapy.

I can’t say it’s been the most fun off-season I’ve had, but I’m grateful for the wonderful care that I’ve received from my surgeon and physical therapy team. All signs point to being on snow this winter with most of my bits and pieces working.

If I had to pick something that’s been my “go to,” it’s indoor cycling since it’s really the only thing I’m cleared to do for long durations. My eyes roll as I type this. I’ve always loathed being one of those “Peloton people,” but it’s the best outlet to pass the hours and let out frustration and aggression. It also has metrics and that’s helpful for me to mark progress vs. my pre-surgery fitness.

What did you learn?

I’m learning patience. Recovery wasn’t easy, and the first two weeks after surgery were particularly painful. Every workout, I think about snowboarding and why I’m going through all this.

How does this keep you engaged in the offseason?

I’m a rank beginner as a cyclist and rower, however, I’ve started focusing on technique and seeing how small changes affect output. It’s a good reminder as I start to think about my coaching, how small moves can make a big impact on snow. It’s had me thinking a lot about adaptive coaching, since I’m constantly using different muscles and tactics to accomplish the same outcome (e.g. my inner right quad is still quite weak, but I’ve started using more core and glute to compensate for things).

I’ve also found a whole new online community of ACLers who have been incredibly supportive and I’m trying to give some of that support back. The ACL community has encouraged me to just share my story of recovery without fear of judgement or failure. You can see some of what I am doing on TikTok at @michaelwma1 which has been a fun platform to get to know better, even though my 13-year-old son thinks “It’s cringe.” 😂  Love being 46 and don’t care!