Only 10 months ago, discus thrower Taryn Gollshewsky’s Olympic dream was shattered when she broke her leg playing soccer in the lead up to Tokyo.
- Bundaberg’s Taryn Gollshewsky has won gold for discus at the 2022 Australian Althetics Championships in Sydney
- It comes less than a year after the 29-year-old broke her leg during a soccer match
- Following her miraculous recovery, the athlete has set her sights on the 2024 Paris Olympics
The Bundaberg local had to learn to walk again — but now, after only 10 weeks of training, she has taken out gold at the 2022 Australian Athletics Championships, held in Sydney at the weekend.
When Taryn picked up the discus to compete for the first time in almost a year, her only goal was to find the joy in the sport she loves.
“My coach and I are certainly still in a rebuilding phase after my injury,” Ms Gollshewsky said.
“Going into these Nationals, the only aspiration was really to enjoy it and have fun.
The 29-year-old was sensationally sidelined from Olympic preparations when she broke her leg during a soccer match in the Wide Bay.
“I was bed ridden for two-and-a-half weeks and then I was on crutches for about eight weeks,” she said.
“It’s been a very long journey, a very emotional one of course as well.”
But the long recovery process was essential to save history from repeating.
Now, the elite athlete’s comeback story has her well-poised to compete at the 2024 Paris Olympics.
“With discus I am rotating, and I am twisting – so with the torque and the rotational forces that go through my leg, I was at risk of re-breaking my leg,” Ms Gollshewsky said.
“I still have some physical limitations and there is still a little bit of pain associated with that injury, but we’re on the way up which is really positive.”
The best is yet to come
Despite her victory at the weekend, Ms Gollshewsky said her gold-winning throw was still far from her best.
“It was way off my personal best. I’m about five metres off what I was throwing last year at our Olympics trial,” she said.
“[But] to walk away as national champion after 10 weeks of training was quite remarkable.”
Ms Gollshewsky’s injury stopped her from competing at the 2020 Toyoko Olympics or this year’s Commonwealth Games.
But her coach, Les Kourikoski, said he was now helping her prepare for the Paris Games.
“I was super proud of her and she should be super proud of herself,” Mr Kourikoski said.
“I think it’s a testament to her steely determination that she just wants to be an elite discus thrower on a global scale.”
A winning support circle
Ms Gollshewsky said her success would not be possible without her mum and her coach.
“When it first happened, I literally needed my mum to feed me, shower me, I couldn’t stand up for long periods of time,” she said.
“I could not have gotten through this process without my mum and my coach as well. He’s turned into not only a coach but a bit of a psychologist.
As for her soccer career, Ms Gollshewsky said she would not be letting it get in the way of achieving Olympic gold for discus again.
“Definitely hanging up the boots. I actually didn’t get my boots back from the paramedics, so I only have one boot at the moment which got put in the bin,” she said.
“No more soccer!”