Optimal Sports Injury Recovery

'Virgil van Dijk says his return to action for Liverpool this summer has felt “very emotional and very tough”, and that he has jumped a mental hurdle after recovering from 10 months out with anterior cruciate ligament damage.'

Virgil van Dijk – Football player in The Guardian

Are you an athlete, coach or trainer looking for guidance, please click here

Hey you, injured athlete!



How annoying for you that you need this site and at the same time how happy we are that you found us. Being injured is hard. The impact of your injury can be felt in your whole body, including your thoughts and feelings. To get the best possible rehabilitation, it is important to pay attention to all these aspects.


Side line

We can imagine that you feel like you are on the sidelines, or that you are not really participating. We are going to help you to get the feeling that you are participating again. You have already taken the first step: you are on this website. By working with 'Leren Revalideren' (the book that will soon be published in English and this website) you will develop skills to deal with all the (unpleasant) feelings you experience and all the thoughts you do not want to have. You will start to see that you have influence on your rehabilitation process and that there are ways to optimize that process.


What can you do?

Your injury is a setback and unfortunately it will not be the last one in your rehabilitation process. Precisely those moments offer you the chance to rebound. Numerous studies have shown that you can develop psychological skills to optimize your rehabilitation. You increase your chances of returning to your sport when you work on skills such as goal setting and visualization. These skills require time and training. Think back to when you started your sport, it takes time and effort to get better and master something new. Training pays off. The insights you gain and the skills you learn during your rehab are also useful and applicable when you are back in full sports mode. Even then you can use them to improve your performance. Many athletes say after a severe injury that they came out stronger.


Physical therapists, coaches, trainers, parents, friends…

This website and the book are also for the people around the athlete, such as physical therapists, coaches, trainers, parents and friends. They play a big role in supporting the athlete.



On this website -which is constantly being updated- you will find the worksheets, podcasts, audio exercises, videos and books, which are referred to in the book. These exercises and tips can be added to the already existing treatment. In this way as many aspects as possible are trained, which influence the rehabilitation. In addition, the same (or more) is achieved in a shorter time with less strain, more well-being and ultimately better rehabilitation.


By whom?

Sports psychologists Afke van de Wouw and Yara van Gendt run the partnership WOUW Performance Coaching, located in the open soccer innovation center, building #11, on the KNVB Campus at Zeist. They have combined their working experience in sports with theories and research from (sports) psychology and sports science and from this 'Leren Revalideren' has emerged.





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    Afke van de Wouw & Yara van Gendt
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