Janique Farand-Taylor (Photo by Edward Pond)

Janique Farand-Taylor was at the peak of her downhill skiing career and only a few weeks away from competing in the 1984 Olympic Games in Sarajevo, Yugoslavia, when she tore a ligament in her knee.

“It happened while playing a fun game of soccer,” she says. “I heard the snap and started to cry – not because of the pain, but because I knew my dream was being taken away.”

The 19-year-old from Saint Sauveur, Que., watched the games from a hospital bed, wearing a cast. “And for many years, I’ve had a tiny scar on my heart about what happened.”

“Even though I recovered physically, I lost my competitive edge because I was afraid of injuring myself again,” Janique says. “I was skiing less. I realized that I was putting an end to my sport.”

Janique was studying sports injury management. “I wanted to put all my energy into helping other athletes recover from injuries,” she says. “I’d found my new passion.” She completed her physiotherapy degree while working at a sports medicine clinic.

Now Janique has a thriving private practice in Toronto. She provides physiotherapy, physical training, acupuncture and craniosacral therapy to not only athletes but also to people from all walks of life. She has even written two books about strengthening exercises: Solid to the Core (New Harbinger, 2006) and the self-published Solid to the Neck, Mid-Back and Shoulder (2009).

Last year, Janique applied to be a volunteer physiotherapist for the Vancouver Olympic Games. Although she didn’t get the position, she says, “I’m just proud that I applied. It’s given me a sense of closure. I can let go of my old dream; I have new dreams. The scar on my heart has begun to heal.”

Published by Homemakers Magazine
November 1, 2010