While some footballers will be already hitting the beach, Pools star Michael Woods has been getting his feet in the sand for an entirely different reason.
The midfielder is making astonishing progress as he fights back from a dislocated ankle and fractured fibula sustained in Pools’ 1-0 win over AFC Wimbledon at the end of February.
Now – just over ten weeks since he underwent an operation to repair the extensive damage – Woods has been back at the training ground to further step up his rehabilitation.
He completed a series of exercises in a sand-pit at the Club’s training base in Durham as medical staff put him through his paces in a bid to ensure he’s ready to return to full training in pre-season.
You can see a video of him completing work in the sand by visiting our Official Facebook Page and it’s footage that has put a big smile on Woods’ face as well as that of Physio Ian Gallagher.
“It’s amazing to think it was only ten and a half weeks since Michael underwent major surgery,” Gallagher told us.
“The purpose of the work on Thursday morning was to be him actually running on his own; it’s functional movement but the sand is taking all the impact so it’s not putting the load through his joints.
“It’s harder because there is an extra give in the sand too so he’s getting a physical work out as well as progressing his rehabilitation – it’s two in one, if you like.
“Doing this work in the sand now will hopefully give him the confidence that he can do it normally and that will help when we make the step back on to the grass.
“I have to say that his work-rate and commitment has been unbelievable; I am having to hold him back to be honest.
“All the excellent progress he has made already is down to his attitude because he’s so desperate ot be back playing football – he’s a real credit to himself.”
Woods will continue to step up his work and it’s hoped he will be able to join in fully with his team-mates when they return for pre-season training on Monday 29th June.