Swimmer overcomes shoulder injury

Swimmer+Bailey+Hill+broke+a+school+record+with+her+relay+team+at+the+state+swim+meet.+

Ashley Spencer

Swimmer Bailey Hill broke a school record with her relay team at the state swim meet.

On Dec. 11 of 2014, junior Bailey Hill came face to face with every athlete’s worst fear. During a swim meet, Hill dislocated her shoulder and tore the cartilage in her joint. That January she had surgery on her shoulder. The injury took her out of swimming for months and she didn’t know if she’d be back anytime soon.

“I went to three separate doctors and all of them said I wouldn’t be able to swim like I used to. It broke my heart, but it gave me a challenge,” Hill said.

Hill went to physical therapy four times a week for three months to recover from the surgery. It was a hard recovery, but she got through it. She has been back in the pool for almost a year and she has beat the odds of the shoulder injury by qualifying for state in all four of her events.

“It was really hard mentally and physically. After surgery I had trouble getting dressed, picking things up and sleeping comfortably,” Hill said. “My mom always believed that I’d be back in the water one day, and that’s what kept me going.”

Hill had support from friends and family throughout the recovery including junior Rachel Nelson.
“It felt like a long recovery, but in reality it was very fast. She was always dying to get back into the water and now she is doing amazing,” Nelson said. “Her staying on the team after her surgery shows how committed and dedicated she is to swimming and being on the team.”

Being raised around the pool and surrounded by family who loved swimming was the very beginning of Hill’s love for the sport. She has now been swimming for eight years. Throughout these years nothing has been able to stop her from swimming and she plans on continuing the sport in college.